While our industry might be a small player on the global stage in terms of production, our technical expertise and ability to pioneer innovative technologies has driven the development of the UK Continental Shelf and has a vital role in extending basin life beyond 2050.
Innovation has delivered significant infrastructure offshore
- A network of 36,000 km of pipelines – equal to distance from Aberdeen to Adelaide and back again – link almost 300 platforms with the shore.
- Since 1965, around 4,000 exploration and appraisal wells have been drilled at a cost of over £50 billion, similar to cost to building the Shard around 100 times.
- Oil and gas platforms are like icebergs with most of the structure underwater; some are higher than the BT Tower.
Technology is employed at every stage of offshore operations
- Over the past 50 years, innovation in the supply chain has enabled delivery of an unrivalled range of products, services and expertise to both the domestic market and the global oil and gas industry.
- Examples range from the advanced techniques used in seismic surveys to help discover new oil and gas resources, to extending drilling capabilities to develop marginal fields and heavy lifting expertise in decommissioning.
- Cutting-edge technologies include directional drilling through which wells can be drilled at myriad angles, tapping reserves miles away and deeper than a mile below the surface; the precision of remote drilling can be likened to delivering a letter through a letter box in Edinburgh from London.
- The UK oil and gas industry is widely regarded as a technology leader in subsea operations and deep water experience.
- Now and in the future, technology will play an increasingly important role to help us achieve increased:
- Operational efficiency
- Safety and reliability
- Exploration success
- Recovery and safe extension of field life
A key priority in the industrial strategies of both the UK and Scottish Governments
- Industry and governments are working closely to identify the key future technology requirements and make sure the resources are there to deliver them.
- The Oil and Gas Authority is supporting delivery of a technology strategy alongside the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Scottish Enterprise and industry.
Advancing technology through co-operative relationships
- The MER UK Technology Leadership Board is driving the technology strategy forward to help maximise economic recovery of the UK’s oil and gas.
- The TLB aims to ensure:
- Technology development is collaborative, focused on priority areas and suitable for multi-field application
- Collaborative working between industry, government, academia and other stakeholders
- Technical knowledge and expertise in the UK competes in export markets and has a part to play in the global oil and gas industry
Find out more about the MER UK Technology Leadership Board