Key facts

Location: Gulf of Mexico, USA

Depth: 2,450 metres (8,000 feet)

Fields: Great White, Tobago, Silvertip

Host platform: Shell 35% (operator), Chevron 37.5%, BP 27.5%
Great White: Shell 33.34% (operator), BP 33.33%, Chevron 33.33%
Sivertip: Chevron 60% and Shell 40% (operator)
Tobago: Shell 32.5% (operator), Nexen 10%, Chevron 30%, Unocal 27.5%

Peak production: 100,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d)

Key contractors: Technip, Kiewit, FMC Technologies, Heerema Marine Contractors

First oil production: 2010

Shell started operating its Perdido production hub in 2010, opening up a new frontier in deep water oil and gas recovery. Perdido features a spar design and is moored in around 2,450 metres (8,000 feet) of water. It is designed to safely withstand hurricane force conditions.


The Perdido spar acts as a production hub for three fields – Great White, Tobago and Silvertip. It gathers, processes and exports oil and gas produced from water depths of around 2,300-2,800 metres (7,500-9,500 feet). The Perdido production hub has the capacity to handle 100,000 barrels of oil and 200 million cubic feet of gas daily.

Society and environment

For decades, the US Gulf of Mexico has been a heartland of energy production. Thousands of Shell employees and contractors work each day to safely find, develop and produce the Gulf of Mexico’s vast oil and gas resources to help power our lives. Safety is crucial to this work. Across all of Shell’s operations, we strive to achieve what we call Goal Zero – no harm to people or the environment.

Shell has been a part of Louisiana and the Gulf Coast for more than 100 years. We are committed to helping shape a positive future for the region through our business activities, social investment programs and employee volunteer work. We partner with many non-profit organisations to support conservation, education in science, engineering, technology and maths (STEM) and economic development projects across the Gulf Coast. Our employees also spend thousands of hours volunteering each year to help rebuild damaged homes, protect and restore Louisiana’s coast, and inspire the state’s next generation of scientists, engineers and leaders.


The Perdido spar was constructed by Technip in Pori, Finland. It began its 13,200-kilometre (8,202-mile) journey to Texas, USA, in May 2008, reaching the Gulf of Mexico in August 2008. The 170-metre (555-feet) cylindrical spar was then moored securely to the sea floor. The Perdido spar’s hull is nearly as tall as the Eiffel Tower in Paris and weighs as much as 10,000 large cars. There are 22 direct vertical access wells from the spar.

The Tobago field, which started production in late 2011, set a world water depth record: a subsea well 2,934 metres (9,626 feet) below the water’s surface. This eclipsed the previous subsea water depth well record of 2,852 metres (9,356 feet), which Shell set at the Silvertip field in the Gulf of Mexico.

Deep-water milestones

More in about us

Assembling one of the deepest offshore hubs

Thousands of people from all over the world worked on Perdido, the world’s deepest spar, and the second deepest oil and gas production hub.

Living on a platform

Far out in the US Gulf of Mexico, the Perdido oil and gas hub is a temporary home for the people who keep production and drilling operations going safely.

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