Aberdeenshire's Ecosse Subsea invests £3m in new tool

Ecosse Subsea Systems (ESS) is to invest up to £3 million in developing a new water-jetting tool that could double trench production rates.

ESS technical director Michael Cowie. Picture: Contributed

The Banchory-based firm has awarded a contract to Northumberland-based Osbit which specialises in bespoke engineering projects for global energy clients.

The technology will expand ESS’s capability to execute larger contracts, including soft soil projects, while the innovative design will differentiate the business from existing suppliers.

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The Aberdeenshire company has just completed a £5m seabed clearance project on behalf of Dong Energy on the Race Bank offshore wind farm located off the Norfolk coast and a route clearance and trenching project on behalf of Prysmian Group on the 70-turbine Wikinger offshore wind farm in the Baltic Sea.

ESS technical director Michael Cowie said: "This is a major investment which will strengthen our suite of seabed tools and offer real benefits to clients operating in the renewables and oil and gas sectors.

"It is anticipated the SCARJet could double trench production rates compared to existing trenchers in the same class, with significant time and cost savings for the end-client."

Osbit director Robbie Blakeman added: "We see a natural fit between Osbit and ESS, with us providing world-class expertise in the design and manufacture of subsea vehicles, while ESS has a wealth of operational experience and a vision for sustainable trenching technology."

The research and development for the SCARJet has been supported by Scottish Enterprise and part funded by the European Structural and Investment Funds Programme.