Competition Launched By UK To Boost Offshore Sector

Published at 04:15PM - 07/03/16

Competition launched by UK to boost offshore sector in a bid to find new and innovative ideas that would lead to a surge in offshore exploration.

The competition comes as part of a package of measures aimed at simulating the UK’s offshore oil and gas industry, amid the ongoing slump in oil prices, including a £20 million (US$28m) seismic survey.

The nation’s regulator for the industry, the Oil and Gas Authority (OGA), launched the competition Monday stating that a minimum £500,000 (US$710,000) would be up for grabs to individuals and organisations with ideas of developing ‘innovative interpretations and products’.

Competition Launched By UK Offshore

Emphasis has been put on attracting new ideas from the industry’s geoscientists and engineers, with applicants able to apply for initial funding up to £30,000 (US$42,500).

Two of the best ideas will be then be selected, with the winning candidates awarded a further £100,000 (US$142,000) to continue the development of their project; which is hoped can be used by both OGA and industry to stimulate offshore activity.

OGA Exploration and Production Director, Gunther Newcombe, said:  “We hope this competition will lead to a greater understanding of some of the UK’s frontier areas and capture the imagination of some of the brightest minds in the highly talented geoscience community.

Government Seismic Survey

The competition comes as part of a package of measures including a, £20 million (US$28m), Government-funded seismic survey of the Rockall Basin and Mid North Sea High (MNSH) areas back in 2015.

Data from the survey has been published in the public domain for the first time, making it freely available to all companies wishing to bid in the UK’s upcoming 29th Licensing Round.

Newcombe added: “For the first time, substantial quantities of new and reprocessed seismic data will be freely and openly available to all. This, and the forthcoming implementation of a more flexible new licensing regime, will play a crucial role in revitalising exploration of the basin.”

Energy Minister, Andrea Leadsom, saod: “This Government is clear that the broad shoulders of the UK are fully behind our vital oil and gas industry, the hardworking people it employs and the families it supports.”

“New exploration is its lifeblood and we funded these seismic studies to support the industry in exploring and unlocking that potential.”

“This competition encourages companies to come up with new, innovative ways to make the most of this data and I look forward to seeing what they propose.”

Seismic Data

The data from the seismic survey will be freely available at the end of March 2016 via the UK Common Data Access (CDA) UKOilandGasData portal.