OGIC surpasses 40th project milestone for innovation and technology projects within oil and gas sector


Following the signing of three new projects, The Oil and Gas Innovation Centre (OGIC) has reached its 40th project target ahead of schedule, with a total investment of over £1.3m in funding for collaborative projects with oil and gas companies and academic expertise in Scottish universities.

From small scale developers to major contractors, OGIC has helped to facilitate collaborative projects with a total of 41 organisations within the oil and gas sector. To date, OGIC’s work has helped to drive research and development capabilities for new, game-changing technology and products that are aiming to provide real solutions for complex business challenges in the industry.


The signing of a collaborative project with Varel UK Limited and the University of Aberdeen marked the 40th milestone for OGIC.


Jason Marchant, Varel UK District Manager North Sea, said: “There is a need to develop a new faster, cheaper way of drilling new offshore frontier fields that contain sections with chert or fractured granite/ conglomerates.

“The current methods with fixed cutter bits usually lead to uncontrolled energy distribution in these rock types leading to multiple and slow bit runs, or risks of roller cone bit bearing failures and lost time fishing cones.

“Together with OGIC and the University of Aberdeen, we’ve been examining a new concept that will ultimately result in the creation of a new hybrid drill bit with duel cutting mechanisms that will help overcome the challenges and result in a much more efficient and economical drilling process.”


This 40th project milestone was quickly surpassed when OGIC confirmed a research partnership between GLINCS and Heriot-Watt University to develop innovative Time Resolved Fluorescence (TRF) technology for scale inhibitors, which are deployed into production wells.

The TRF technology in this new project will address current industry challenges relating to sampling and testing, which is typically a labour intensive, high-cost and time intensive process.

The new TRF technology will enable sampling and testing to be deployed offshore in real time. This will provide a more cost-effective and efficient solution, and will also allow for increased analyses and a greater source of data for a better understanding of the real-time anti-scale deposition treatment requirements.


Arthur Marais, CEO of GLINCS, commented on the project: “Scale inhibitors have been extensively used in oil and gas recovery to prevent scale deposition, but our TRF method represents a break from existing analysis technologies. Not only can it be used to detect concentrations at sub part-per-million values, but it can also be used for multi-detection of different chemistries, and, more importantly, it is suitable for offshore application.

“The collaborative project with OGIC and Heriot-Watt University will enable us to conduct essential comparative experiments to qualify the TRF technique for scale inhibitor analysis. This will be a valuable contribution to our early stage research and development process, and we look forward to furthering the project later this year.”


The part-funding across all projects to date has resulted in more than £1.3m worth of funding being injected into collaborative projects for innovation and technology driven solution for the oil and gas sector. Additional private sector funding for these projects brings the total projects value to £2.4m.


Ian Phillips, Chief Executive of OGIC, said: “It is a significant achievement to have reached this milestone, and to do this ahead of schedule. To date we have part-funded and facilitated over 40 collaborations between oil and gas companies and relevant Scottish universities.

“By matching these companies with the appropriate academic partners and co-funding projects, OGIC is helping to accelerate innovation to address the oil and gas industry’s exploration, production and decommissioning challenges. We continue to work closely with the sector and Scottish universities to identify and support new opportunities for projects, and we look forward to signing our next project.”


OGIC is an innovation support organization that helps companies access the research and development capability within Scotland’s university community. OGIC’s work directly contributes to the twin goals of maximising economic recovery from the UK continental shelf and supporting the development of the supply chain through bringing new products and services to the UK and international markets.


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