Bethlehem Steel Signs Licensing Agreement For Tension Moored Platforms

Bethlehem Steel Corpration recently signed a long-term licensing agreement for highly advanced offshore oil production technology—tension moored platforms (TMP) with Fluor Engineers, Inc. The announcement was issued jointly by David H. Klinges, vice president of Bethlehem's marine construction group, and F.

Sweeney Tuck, president of Ocean Services Division of Fluor Engineers.

The agreement combines Fluor's design technology and extensive marketing experience in the offshore industry with Bethlehem's engineering and construction services which have been serving the offshore and marine industries since 1905.

Mr. Klinges said for production platform applications, "the TMP design offers a real cost advantage where its only competitors are the various and very costly rigid or guyed tower designs." These, he noted, become prohibitively expensive for depths over 1,200 feet.

The TMP design is a platform resembling a semi-submersible that is rigidly attached to several piled anchors through multiple tension legs of wire rope or tubing. The buoyancy of the platform at all times exceeds its weight, keeping the legs in tension. Mr. Tuck noted that his company holds several patents in tension moored platform technology and has been a leader in this field since the late 1960s.

The agreement gives Bethlehem Steel the exclusive right to build TMPs with Fluor technology on the East and Gulf Coasts of North and Central America and the Caribbean.

Although equipment sales to the offshore industry are currently stagnant, Mr. Klinges said that optimism and prices paid for recent leases in the Gulf of Mexico indicate real confidence on the part of the oil companies in a renewal of offshore activity. "We see this rise in activity," the Bethlehem executive continued, "occurring over the next two or three years, and we intend to utilize this period to place ourselves in a good marketing position, offering a broad line of equipment to the industry."

Maritime Reporter Magazine, page 5,  Jan 15, 1984

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