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Support for new subsea test centre

Written by  OE Staff Monday, 15 May 2017 02:43

A new center of excellence for testing emerging technologies in the subsea sector is to be established with support from Scottish Enterprise. 

Balmoral Offshore Engineering, based in Aberdeen, is creating a new open access hyperbaric pressure testing facility for the oil and gas supply chain, and specifically for the subsea sector.

Scottish Enterprise is supporting the project with a US1.29 million (£1 million) research and development grant to the company, which will invest $1.94 million (£1.5 million) in the project. The center will be available for large companies and small to medium size enterprises to use.

The project will more than double the capacity of large-scale open access pressure testing vessels from two vessels to five in Scotland. It will also create Scotland’s first fully open access ultra-deep water hyperbaric test facility which will enable testing for products that are to be exported to international markets.

Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon made the announcement ahead of the National Economic Forum in Inverness.

She said: “This specialist facility will allow new products to be developed and existing ones to be tested and improved. This will bring huge benefits in developing and supporting emerging technologies in the oil and gas industry.

“Scotland is a world leader in subsea engineering, already accounting for around 15 % of the £50 billion global subsea market and as our Subsea Engineering Action plan has outlined, we want to build on this." 

Jim Milne CBE, Chairman and Managing Director, Balmoral Group, said: “With the offshore industry demanding ever-increasing product testing, and as a company with innovation at its core, we are pleased to offer additional capacity for ‘open access’ third party testing. As well as servicing our customers we particularly look forward to supporting Scotland’s academic institutions with their research and development programs.

“The Balmoral Subsea Test Center currently employs 12 people and in addition to safeguarding those positions there is a high probability of adding to this number in the short to medium term.”

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