THE CARRIBEAN floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) facility being developed for shipping group Exmar has floated out of the Wison Offshore & Marine dry dock in Nantong, China.

Wison won the engineering, procurement, construction, installation and commissioning (EPCIC) contract for the vessel, which is expected to be the world’s first operational FLNG facility, from Exmar in 2012.

The company works with US-based engineering, procurement and construction services company Black & Veatch in the development of the vessel, with the group responsible for the engineering and procurement of the topsides equipment, as well as providing its LNG liquefaction technology.

Wison and Black & Veatch are now in the process of completing the commissioning activities on the facility in preparation for sail away and delivery to its location in Colombia by the end of the second quarter of 2015.

The FLNG unit comprises a non-propelled barge that will be operated off the Caribbean coast of Colombia for Pacific Rubiales Energy and equipped to convert 72 million standard cubic feet of natural gas into LNG per year for temporary storage and export.

Wison Offshore & Marine president L. Dwayne Breaux said the event was a major milestone.

“By being an integral part of this premier project for Exmar and their client Pacific Rubiales Energy, Wison is proving that by working with our key partner Black & Veatch that we can establish a cost-effective EPCIC solution to the market that can be repeated for other LNG developments,” he said.

With the Caribbean FLNG unit out of its Nantong dry dock, Wison is now using the area for fabrication of its second LNG facility, a barge-based floating regasification unit for a 50/50 joint venture between Exmar and Pacific Rubiales subsidiary Pacific Midstream Holding Corporation.