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Sciencesoft and the University of Glasgow seek ways to boost North Sea oil production

30 January 2013

Award-winning oil and gas software company Sciencesoft is working with university academics to explore ways of boosting North Sea oil production.

Sciencesoft's Dr Lindsay Wood
Sciencesoft's Dr Lindsay Wood

The move comes after Sciencesoft, based in Glasgow, and the University of Glasgow’s School of Science and Engineering won a £75,000 grant from the UK government-sponsored Technology Strategy Board.

The seven-month long collaborative project will look at methods of enhancing oil recovery (EOR) using sophisticated software that allows engineers to refocus on specific parts of established, mature fields.

The UK government has expressed a desire to see further work on maximising the returns from existing oil producing fields in the North Sea.

The £75,000 grant was part of a £1m allocation made available in a competition open to UK-wide companies involved in oil and gas sector innovation.

Sciencesoft’s specialised software products allow reservoir engineers to visualise and interpret oil and gas production and, in turn, make key performance decisions that improve output. 

Dr Lindsay Wood (pictured), Sciencesoft’s director of research and development, described the joint project with Glasgow University as “hugely exciting” and added: “Between our company and the university the team involved has a wealth of experience and the knowledge to develop innovative new ways of enhancing production and extending asset lifetimes in the oil sector”.

“We’ll be looking at constructing fine scale visualisation models of EOR processes, from existing full field simulation models, which will enable engineers to accurately target parts of existing oil fields and maximise further recovery.”

Professor John Chapman, Head of College of Science and Engineering at the University of Glasgow said: “As a key aim of the University of Glasgow is to extend our Knowledge Exchange activity, we are delighted to continue our relationship with Sciencesoft. 

“This time we are bringing together leading edge expertise from Engineering and Earth Sciences to address real challenges in the oil sector.”

The Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board, Iain Gray, said: “Investment in innovation is important to help prolong the life of the UK’s hydrocarbon reservoirs and increase the global competitiveness of the UK oil and gas sector. Supporting businesses capable of high growth, working with other companies in the oil and gas sector, will help to maximise UK assets, assist in sustaining a strong supply chain, and help in supplying global markets.”

The Technology Strategy Board’s aim in supporting projects such as Sciencesoft’s with the University is to help anchor and develop the oil and gas supply chain in the UK to deliver sustainable jobs and economic growth in the long term. It is expected that projects will, through further development, be able to deliver cost reduction and efficiency improvements while contributing to environmental sustainability.

As a result of previous collaboration with Glasgow University, the company is currently sponsoring a PhD postgraduate in the Department of Computer Science. In addition Sciencesoft is sponsoring physics undergraduates at Strathclyde University, from where company founders Dr Lindsay Wood and William Wood graduated.

Sciencesoft has a track record of working with a number of universities throughout the world including USA, Canada, Norway and the Far East, allowing students free access to many of its software products, thereby giving them a chance to use ‘real-life’ technology in their studies and theses.

Sciencesoft was awarded The Queen’s Award for Enterprise for International Trade in 2011. A year earlier it secured the John Logie Baird Award for Innovation.

For more information about Sciencesoft, click here

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