New Initiative 'Could Help Unlock' Over 3.5B Barrels in UKCS
The UK’s Oil & Gas Technology Centre (OGTC) has launched an industry-backed ‘Facility of the Future’ initiative, which it says could help unlock more than 3.5 billion barrels of reserves in marginal discoveries on the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS).
The initiative will develop “lower-cost, re-usable, smart facilities that are operated remotely from onshore control centres,” the OGTC said in an organization statement. These facilities are expected to create new, skilled onshore jobs.
‘Facility of the Future’ will kick off with a multi-partner study led by Crondall Energy subsidiary Buoyant Production Technologies Ltd. This study will be co-funded by the OGTC and collaborating partners.
“New, smarter and more automated ways of developing oil and gas fields are required if we’re to fully unlock marginal discoveries and maximize economic recovery from the UKCS,” Chris Pearson, marginal discoveries solution centre manager, said in an organization statement.
“The Facility of the Future initiative will help to significantly reduce life-cycle costs and strengthen the investment case for both marginal discoveries and more traditional reservoirs,” he added.
Pearson said oil and gas is “playing catch-up with many industries” when it comes to automation and remote operations.
“We’re exploring how the combination of existing and new technology can be best used in the offshore environment to improve safety, reduce life cycle cost and increase efficiency,” he said.
There are more than 360 marginal discoveries on the UKCS, with each holding between 3-50 million barrels of oil equivalent, according to the OGTC, which says that developing these discoveries using existing approaches is not economical.
The OGTC was established in October 2016 with $234 million (GBP 180 million) funding as part of the Aberdeen City Region Deal. Its goals include helping to maximize economic recovery from the UKCS and anchoring the supply chain in the North East of Scotland.
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