Cascade & Chinook project (USA)

Cascade & Chinook was a pioneering Ultra Deep Water project, which set a benchmark in ultra-deepwater technology for the oil industry around the world. One of the key features of the project were power umbilicals reinforced by Epsilon carbon rods.

The Cascade & Chinook project paved the way to new projects using carbon reinforced umbilicals, while Epsilon was also developing in parallel an innovative technology for composite armours for ultra deep water flexible risers, in partnership with its historical customer Technip, Petrobras and Total.

Year: 2008

Client: Petrobras

Location: Cascade & Chinook, Gulf of Mexico, USA


  • First FPSO in the US GoM
  • Deepest free standing hybrid risers in the world
  • Deepest moored vessel in the world at 2 570 m / 8 430 ft
  • Deepest risers installed, at more than 2 500 m / 8 200 ft
  • Deepest umbilicals installed, at 2 895 m / 9 500 ft
  • Umbilicals up to 22.5 km / 14 miles long

The umbilicals utilize a patented carbon fiber rod that provides for axial stiffness without adding significant additional weight.
The carbon fiber rods reduce the global elongation of the cable and keep stress and strain at a low level, including in  ultradeepwater.
Carbon fiber rods also reduce the need for structural reinforcement on the host platform, reduced buoyancy requirements
and increased ease of installation.

The custom designed umbilicals offered several advantages:
• Compatible with all commonly used hydraulic fluids and injection chemicals, including methanol;
• High crush load capacity for deepwater installation and improved fatigue properties;
• All elements individually protected and separated by PVC conduit, eliminating the need for separate armoring layers;
• PVC profiles provide multi-purpose functionality and protection and correctly space the internal elements in the umbilical cross section;
• PVC profiles absorb the impact energy efficiently through elastic deformation;
• Long and predictable service life.