The National Subsea Research Initiative (NSRI) is bringing together academic experts from across the country to come up with a collaborative approach to unlocking the potential of small pools of hydrocarbons in the North Sea.

NSRI is hosting an event in Aberdeen on 22 June to highlight the expert skills that are housed in the UK’s top universities which will help recover 1-1.8 billion barrels of oil which currently cannot be exploited economically.

Universities, technology developers and the wider industry will come together to hear about the capability the UK academic community has to meet the challenges, and the developments which can ultimately help progress concepts through to infield implementation.

Industry professionals from across the country will be given a flavor of the work undertaken by the academic community in a series of presentations on autonomous systems and robotics, integrity management, risers and pipelines, flow assurance management and geotechnical physical modeling capabilities.

Sponsored by The National Structural Integrity Research Centre (NSIRC), the event will welcome speakers from universities across the country who specialize in subsea research to showcase the pockets of excellence within the academic community in an effort to encourage greater collaboration between industry and academia to speed up the development of new technology.

The University of Manchester was picked as the ‘hub’ for BP’s International Centre for Advanced Materials in 2012 and secured an investment of £60m to help support the search for oil in deeper and more challenging environments.

Robert Akid, Professor of Corrosion and Materials at the University of Manchester will provide an overview of the research studies relevant to oil and gas upstream activities which are being carried out at the centre.

Professor Nick Wright, Vice Principal from Newcastle University will also demonstrate the UK’s capabilities in high pressure, high temperature developments through the university’s new £10m world-leading Neptune Test Centre.

Dr. Gordon Drummond, project director of NSRI, said: “Without some form of intervention, small pools will remain locked in and MER (maximizing economic recovery) will not be achieved.

“Only by recognizing the national strategic importance of these small pockets of hydrocarbons and working together will we be able to exploit them in an environment where conventional market dynamics have failed.

“Bringing together the country’s best minds will allow us to identify the possible technological solutions that could unlock these small discoveries and help prolong the life of the North Sea.”

As the technology arm of Subsea UK, NSRI explores where the industry is heading in terms of subsea infrastructure and identifies the technologies needed to help it get there, supporting field development and expansion in both deep and shallow waters.

NSRI’s Expert Skills Showcase will take place on Wednesday 22 June at Village Hotel, Prime Four, Kingswells, Aberdeen. Those wishing to attend can book their place online here.

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