Innovation could unlock 3.4bn barrels of oil around the UK

Adopting the plug and play concept in oil and gas could significantly reduce the cost of developing marginal fields
Adopting the plug and play concept in oil and gas could significantly reduce the cost of developing marginal fields
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An Aberdeen-based innovation centre is backing four subsea “plug and play” projects which could help unlock the 3.4 billion barrels of oil and gas in marginal fields on the UK continental shelf.

The Oil & Gas Technology Centre is promoting the plug-and-play concept which is used regularly in the computing and space industries.

It sees equipment designed to be connected, operated and reused more simply and efficiently. Adopting this concept in oil and gas could significantly reduce the cost of developing marginal fields - known in the industry as small pools.

Carlo Procaccini, head of technology at the Oil and Gas Authority said: “Small pools represent a significant opportunity to maximise economic recovery from the UK contiental shelf and it’s great to see promising technology initiatives being taken forward.

“Technology deployment is key to redefining our sector by reducing the costs of development wells, designing optimised subsea infrastructure, or developing efficient standalone concepts to capitalise on the potential of small pools.”

Among other projects, the centre is working with Glasgow Caledonian and Edinburgh universities to transform how electrical power is delivered subsea. The smart, modular power network will increase reliability, reduce maintenance requirements, and provide improved flexibility for installation, operation and reuse.

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