Seabed processing systems and solutions

Alpha Thames Subsea

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CUSP™ Horizontal Flowline Connection System






CUSP™ is a lightweight diverless horizontal connector system suitable for connection of both rigid and flexible flowlines, pipelines and umbilicals.


CUSP™ has been designed to dramatically reduce the complexity of subsea tie-in and connection operations.

CUSP™ allows simple connection of rigid pipelines and tie-ins in diver-less water depths and offers significant advantages in deepwater applications, which are beyond the limit for flexible pipes. CUSP™ also avoids the piping high points created when inverted “U” tie-in spools are used and therefore reduces possibility of slugging.

The CUSP™ connection system comprises two parts, a short "CUSP™ Spool", and an "Installation Tool”. The system installs a short piping spool, typically 900 mm long, between the two piping components to be connected. Only a few millimetres horizontal displacement of the adjacent piping is required to make-up the connection. This design feature makes the system uniquely suitable for the horizontal connection of rigid pipelines and flowlines.

The "CUSP™ Spool" is terminated at each end with special system flanges, which include the seals. The ‘CUSP™ Spool’ is clamped to the mating piping components by the multiple tie-bars that are tensioned by its over-centre toggle mechanism. These tie-bars are accurately set prior to deployment, thus eliminating the need to undertake bolt-tensioning operations on the seabed.

The "Installation Tool" is a robust, simple hydraulic tool that contains the necessary equipment required to complete the tie-in of the flowline. Alignment, clamping, sealing and locking are carried out by a single hydraulic operation, making significant savings over methods currently in use.

The "Installation tool" can install a range of "CUSP™ Spool" sizes. It can be deployed by a standard workclass ROV, and is recovered to the surface for re-use after the installation operations are completed.

CUSP™ flowline connectors have a parallel, full through-bore that allows pigging, and avoids high points in the piping. CUSP™ can be supplied as a multibored connection system, with additional, non-piggable, annular bores.

Certification to industry-accepted standards enables the connector to be deployed in subsea applications worldwide.


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