TechnipFMC, a company best known for its offshore oilfield services and equipment, is looking to diversify its offering and has now joined forces with Loke Marine Minerals (Loke) to develop enabling technologies for the extraction of seabed minerals in Norway.
The World Bank, World Economic Forum, and International Energy Agency have recognized marine minerals as one of the potential answers for meeting the growing demand for metals used in electric vehicle batteries, clean energy technology, and consumer electronics.
Loke Marine Minerals was established in 2019 by experienced offshore energy professionals with the aim to become a leading provider of minerals for the green energy transition. The company has leveraged its E&P and subsea technology experience to develop designs of production equipment and performed studies relating to exploration, production, environmental and economic aspects of the industry, with the aim to secure top acreage licenses.
"Together, Loke and TechnipFMC are developing a patent-pending, autonomous subsea production system that aims to have minimal impact on the environment and positions the company well for potential offshore licensing on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS) and internationally," TechnipFMC said.
Jonathan Landes, President, Subsea at TechnipFMC said, “We are pleased to partner with Loke in the development of this important resource. Our culture of collaboration, integration, and innovation, along with our expertise in subsea robotics and extensive history on the [Norwegian Continental Shelf] can help meet the rising demand for new technologies and resources that are driving the energy transition.”
TechnipFMC has a minority ownership stake in Loke. Wilh. Wilhemsen Holding ASA, a global maritime industry group, and NorSea Group have also taken an ownership stake in Loke.
Walter Sognnes, CEO at Loke, commented, “We are very excited and pleased to get these first-class and top choice companies to join on the owner side of Loke. We see great benefits for the exciting phase the company now is entering from what they are bringing to the table, with regards to knowledge, experience, and culture. Their complementary business areas with common overlap is an ideal match with our ambition of becoming an international leading marine minerals company.”
The NCS is known to have copper, zinc, cobalt, and other rare earth elements. Norway is one of the only countries to have formalized marine mineral legislation. The Norwegian government is expected to make a final decision on licensing approval for exploration and production in 2023.