The development of CATS has been one of the most significant events in the history of the UK’s natural gas industry.
CATS started operating in 1993. The project comprising, at this stage, the offshore riser platform and the pipeline, was completed on time and within budget. Together with the development of the Everest and Lomond fields, it was one of the largest construction projects ever undertaken in the UK, second only to the Channel Tunnel at that time.
Due to increased demand within the Central North Sea, the decision was taken to provide a processing service to future users of the CATS pipeline, enabling delivery of their gas into the National Transmission System.
This required the construction of a pipeline reception and gas treatment facility, and the CATS gas and liquids processing plant, comprising two processing trains each with the capacity to handle around 17 million standard cubic metres (600 million standard cubic feet) of gas per day.
The first of the new trains went into operation four months ahead of schedule in May 1997 and the second train was commissioned in 1998.
Since its inception, CATS has been operating safely and successfully. It has a first-class safety and operational record and a well-deserved reputation for being a safe and reliable transportation route for gas fields in the Central North Sea.