The National Subsea Research Institute (NSRI) has announced the recruitment of three new companies.
Lloyds Register, Shell and Acergy are the latest internationally leading organizations to join the research facility as industry members.
These organizations join BP, Subsea 7, Chevron, Technip and Total; Nexen and Talisman bringing the total number of members to 10 and moving NSRI towards its target of 20 company members by the end of 2009.
NSRI was established by Subsea UK, and Aberdeen, Dundee and Robert Gordon Universities via the Northern Research Partnership in Engineering, to provide a focus for the development of subsea technology and expertise.
The institute is strongly supported by Scottish Enterprise.
Newcastle University has also joined the institute as a new academic partner, further strengthening the institute's expertise and research capacity.
NSRI aims to ensure, that by the use of leading edge technology, the UK retains its market-leading position and captures a significant share of the global subsea market worth £25 billion at present and estimated to grow to over £40 billion by 2011.
An industry led company, NSRI brings together industry and academia to conduct research which is aligned with the needs of the industry in both the short and long-term both within the UKCS and internationally.
Professor Albert Rodger, chief executive of NSRI and Vice-Principal and Head of the College of Physical Sciences, University of Aberdeen said, "This strong increase in membership is a reflection of NSRI's commitment to industry led and demand driven research.
"Our vision is to place the UK firmly at the forefront of technology development and innovation in the years ahead.
"Working with our members, we are in the process of developing a series of flagship research programs which will feed into the national strategy for the subsea industry over the next two decades.
"Our primary research focus areas have concentrated on four themes: reliability and integrity, autonomous systems and smart fields, near seabed civil engineering and fluid dynamics, and near-surface dynamics and floating systems. By co-ordinating research efforts in these areas on behalf of the subsea industry, we aim to address the fundamental research challenges and technical barriers, which will optimise subsea field developments in the years and decades ahead."
Bill Edgar, Chairman of NSRI added, "Since NSRI is effectively the pan industry research center for the subsea industry, the contribution and participation of the sector's leading players is vital to its success.
"NSRI has been delighted by the support it has received to date, and by the willingness and enthusiasm with which representatives from industry have devoted their valuable time to become closely engaged in the development of the company's research program. This is a sign of the much closer working relationships in knowledge transfer and innovative thinking between academics and the business community. This relationship will enable us to sustain and prolong the life of the industry in the UK as a leading developer of new technologies and a powerhouse of knowledge development, in what is a dynamic and forward looking global industry.
"The work of NSRI, as a developer of innovative technology will also provide strong support to the UK subsea supply chain as it strives to increase its share of the rapidly growing global market in the deepwater oil and gas provinces."