Australia: Wood-led subsea research project gets funding

National Energy Resources Australia (NERA) has awarded the TASER project with AUD 145,000 ($115,000) in funds spread over two years. 

TASER, or Transforming Australia Subsea Equipment Reliability project, is a collaborative industry effort focused on sharing knowledge to improve subsea equipment design.

It follows on from the Subsea Equipment Australian Reliability Joint Industry Project (SEAR JIP), both led by oilfield services company Wood supported by a group of operators.

Wood said on Thursday that the TASER project, also supported by Chevron, Shell, and Woodside, would receive AUD 145,000 of funding over two years from NERA.

According to the company, another goal of the project is to reduce the requirement for costly and time-consuming interventions in Australia’s challenging offshore warm water environment.

In northern Australian waters, marine fouling has a significant effect on the performance of subsea equipment, believed to be a result of the water composition, light, oxygen, and temperature.

Wood added that the TASER project would create a ‘living laboratory’ to assess the effectiveness of innovative coatings, materials, and technologies against calcareous deposition and marine organism growth on subsea equipment.

Robin Watson, Wood’s chief executive, said: “We are delighted to receive funding from NERA for this project which will assist operators, service companies, and others in the oil and gas industry in Australia to avoid costly offshore repair campaigns.

“The project will enable a better understanding of subsea equipment failures and intervention requirements and has the potential to offer significant cost savings to operators by maximizing equipment reliability, availability and therefore production uptime.”

NERA chief executive Miranda Taylor added: “Digital technologies and ‘living laboratories’ allow faster, safer adaption, testing, and application of the technologies needed to optimize the performance of the oil and gas industry’s subsea equipment.

“NERA is supporting the TASER project as it will bring operators and vendors together to share, collaborate, and address industry challenges in real life conditions.”

The oilfield services firm also said that multiple vendors were loaning equipment to be tested underwater over a three-year period. Results from the research will be validated by the University of Western Australia.

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