Glossary

FINANCIAL TERMS

IFRS

International Financial Reporting Standards issued by IASB (International Accounting Standards Board) and adopted by the European Commission. They comprise of: International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), International Accounting Standards (IAS), interpretations issued by the International Financial Reporting Interpretation Committee (IFRIC) and the Standing Interpretations Committee (SIC) adopted by IASB. The denomination International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) has been adopted by IASB and applies to principles issued after May 2003. Principles issued before May 2003 have maintained the denomination IAS.

Leverage

The degree to which the company is utilising borrowed money. It is the ratio between net financial debt and Shareholders’ equity inclusive of minority interest.

Contribution from operations

Operating Income before general and administrative expenses.

ROACE

Return on average capital employed. The ratio between net income before minority interest plus after-tax net financial expenses deriving from net financial debt, over average net capital employed.

OPERATIONAL TERMS

Conventional waters

Depth of up to 500 metres.

Deep waters

Depths of over 500 metres.

Buckle detection

System that utilises electromagnetic waves during pipelaying to signal collapse of or deformations to pipeline laid.

Bundles

Bundles of cables.

Commissioning

Series of processes and procedures undertaken in order to start operations of a gas pipeline, associated plants and equipment.

Concrete coating

Subsea pipelines are coated with reinforced concrete so as to ballast and protect them from damage and corrosion.

Deck

Area of a vessel or platform where work equipment is located: process plant and equipment, accommodation modules and drilling units.

Decommissioning

Undertaken in order to end operations of a gas pipeline, associated plants and equipment. It may occur at the end of the life of the plant, following an accident, for technical or financial reasons, and/or on environmental or safety grounds.

Dynamically Positioned Heavy Lift Vessel

Vessel equipped with a heavy-lift crane, capable of holding a precise position through the use of thrusters, thereby counteracting the force of the wind, sea, current, etc.

EPIC (Engineering, Procurement, Installation, Construction)

A type of contract typical of the offshore construction sector, which relates to the realisation of a complex project where the global or main contractor (usually a construction company or a consortium) provides the engineering services, procurement of materials, construction of the system and its infrastructure, transport to site, installation and commissioning/preparatory activities to the start up of operations.

Facilities

Auxiliary services, structures and installations required to support the main systems.

Flare

Tall metal structure used to burn off gas produced by the oil/gas separation in oil fields, when it is not possible to utilise it onsite or ship it elsewhere.

Floatover

Type of module installation onto offshore platforms that does not require lifting operations. A specialised vessel transporting the module uses a ballast system to position itself directly above the location where the module is to be installed; it then proceeds to de-ballast and lower the module into place. Once this has been completed the vessel backs off and the module is secured to the support structure.

FPSO vessel

Floating Production, Storage and Offloading system comprising a large tanker equipped with a high-capacity production facility. This system, moored at the bow to maintain a geo-stationary position, is effectively a temporarily fixed platform that uses risers to connect the subsea wellheads to the on-board processing, storage and offloading systems.

Hydrocracking (plant)

Installation for process separation of large oil molecules.

Hydrotesting

Operation involving high pressure (higher than operational pressure) water being pumped into a pipeline to ensure that it is devoid of defects.

Jacket

Platform underside structure fixed to the seabed using piles.

Jack-up

Mobile self-lifting unit comprising a hull and retractable legs, used for offshore drilling operations.

J-laying

Method of pipelaying that utilises an almost vertical launch ramp, making the pipe configuration resemble a ‘J’. This configuration is suited to deep-water pipe laying.

LNG

Liquefied natural gas is obtained by cooling down natural gas to minus 160°C. at normal pressure. The gas is liquefied to make it facilitate its transportation from the place of extraction to that of processing and/or utilisation. A tonne of LNG equates to 1,400 cubic metres of gas.

Midstream

Sector comprising all those activities relating to the construction and management of the oil transport infrastructure.

Moon pool

Opening in the hull of a drillship to allow for the passage of operational equipment.

Mooring buoy

Offshore mooring system.

Offshore/Onshore

The term offshore indicates a portion of open sea and, by induction, the activities carried out in such area, while onshore refers to land operations.

Pig

Piece of equipment used to internally clean, scrape and survey a pipeline.

Piggy-backed pipeline

Small-diameter pipeline, fixed to a larger pipeline, used to transport a product other than that of the main line.

Pile

Long and heavy steel pylon driven into the seabed; a system of piles is used as foundation for anchoring a fixed platform or other offshore structures.

Pipe-in-pipe

Subsea pipeline system comprising two coaxial pipes, used to transport hot fluids (oil & gas). The inner pipe transports the fluid whereas the outer pipe carries the insulating material necessary to reduce heat loss to the sea. The outer pipe also protects the pipeline from the water pressure.

Pre-commissioning

Comprises pipeline washing out and drying.

Pre-drilling template

Support structure for a drilling platform.

Pulling

Minor operations on oil wells due to maintenance or marginal replacements.

Rig

Drilling installation comprising the derrick, the drill deck, which supports the derrick, and ancillary installations that enable the descent, ascent and rotation of the drill unit as well as mud extraction.

Riser

Manifold connecting the subsea wellhead to the surface.

ROV (Remotely operated vehicle)

Unmanned vehicle, piloted and powered via umbilical, used for subsea surveys and operations.

S-laying

Method of pipelaying that utilises the elastic properties afforded by steel, making the pipe configuration resemble an ‘S’, with one end on the seabed and the other under tension onboard the ship. This configuration is suited to medium to shallow-water laying.

Slug catcher

Equipment for the purification of gas.

Spar

Floating production system, anchored to the seabed through a semi-rigid mooring system, comprising a vertical cylindrical hull supporting the platform structure.

Spool

Connection between a subsea pipeline and the platform riser, or between the terminations of two pipelines.

SURF facilities

Pipelines and equipment connecting the well or subsea system to a floating unit.

Template

Rigid and modular subsea structure where the oilfield well-heads are located.

Tendons

Pulling cables used on tension leg platforms used to ensure platform stability during operations.

Tension leg platform (TLP)

Fixed-type floating platform held in position by a system of tendons and anchored to ballast caissons located on the seabed. These platforms are used in ultra-deep waters.

Tie-in

Connection between a production line and a subsea wellhead or simply a connection between two pipeline sections.

Topside

Portion of platform above the jacket.

Trenching

Burying of offshore or onshore pipelines.

Trunkline

Oil pipeline connecting large storage facilities to the production facilities, refineries and/or onshore terminals.

Umbilical

Flexible connecting sheath, containing flexible pipes and cables.

Upstream/Downstream

The term upstream relates to exploration and production operations. The term downstream relates to all those operations that follow exploration and production operations in the oil sector.

Wellhead

Fixed structure separating the well from the outside environment.

Workover

Major maintenance operation on a well or replacement of subsea equipment used to transport the oil to the surface.