ABS Establishes Offshore Facility Research Center

ABS has announced the establishment of the ABS Brazil Offshore Technology Center in partnership with the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro.

The focus of the center will be on research intended to support the development of new technologies for offshore facilities. Although the research efforts will place a particular emphasis on facilities intended for use in Brazilian waters, broader challenges associated
with offshore energy resource extraction will also be addressed. Applied research will be conducted to study a wide range of oil and
gas field development issues particularly those associated with ultra deepwater activity, and high temperature and high pressure recovery.

It is expected that the research and development facility will become an established fixture on the COPPE/UFRJ campus. "This is a long-term commitment to the University and to the Brazilian offshore community by ABS," said Robert D. Somerville, ABS Chairman and CEO at the reception in Rio de Janeiro to announce the new venture. "The Federal University of Rio de Janeiro is the ideal partner for this new collaborative effort and we look forward to working with them on joint projects that will have immediate and direct benefit to the offshore industry here in Brazil."

Noting that "Brazil is home to some of the most innovative technical advances that have taken place in the offshore sector in recent
years," Somerville said that offshore specialists from ABS will collaborate with industry partners, COPPE/UFRJ faculty and students
and with representatives from the Petrobras Research Center, CENPES on these new projects.

ABS Senior Vice President of Technology Peter Tang-Jensen said the first research project to be undertaken by the center will be a study on torpedo piles, an innovative mooring anchor system that has been developed by Petrobras. The study is expected to result in the development of a rational approach for the class review and approval of torpedo piles.

Other initial research topics being considered include: coupled motions, connections between risers and floating production, storage
and offloading (FPSO) units and risk-based stability criteria for self-elevating drilling units.

Associated with establishing the center, ABS has also announced a commitment to further the education of Brazilian students in naval
architecture or offshore engineering by providing ABS-funded scholarships. The society will also underwrite a COPPE/UFRJ graduate
student to pursue energy-related research.

"Working in concert with members of the industry, both locally and globally, as well as reaching out to our colleagues at CENPES and
assisting students to carry out new research, ABS wants to be the catalyst for a new generation of technology solutions for ultra
deepwater energy development," said Tang-Jensen.