The GCE Subsea Cluster
The combined and varied experience and operational expertise of the industrial players, supporting businesses and the R&D and educational institutions make GCE Subsea a global knowledge hub within oil & gas.
Coast Center Base at Ågotnes, west of Bergen
The GCE Subsea cluster is a world leader in the field of operating, maintaining and modifying subsea equipment in order to recover more oil & gas from the reservoirs.
The cluster’s main hub, Coast Center Base at Ågotnes west of Bergen, is the world’s largest base for subsea aftermarket activities. Nowhere in the world has as much subsea equipment gathered in one geographical location with as many people working in and affiliated with the subsea industry. A substantial proportion of the activity is associated with Statoil, which has its largest “subsea pool” for the Norwegian continental shelf at Coast Center Base.
Two of the largest subsea companies in the world, Aker Solutions and FMC Technologies run large parts of their installation and maintenance activities from Ågotnes. Another of the world’s largest subsea technology companies, OneSubsea Processing, also undertakes significant activity in the region with their fabrication and test facilities just across the fjord at Horsøy.
The cluster represents world-class expertise within a range of subsea-related disciplines such as:
- Enhanced recovery of oil & gas through life-of-field services and supply of subsea equipment
- Operation and development of the largest subsea fields globally in terms of number of subsea wells
- Design and engineering of subsea equipment
- Advanced subsea multi-phase and single-phase pumps and compressors
- Advanced subsea instrumentation and sensor technology
- Subsea equipment such as umbilicals, flowlines, connectors, valves, etc.
- Fabrication of subsea equipment
- Meteorology, oceanography and the marine environment
Some of the larger GCE Subsea companies host industrial centers of excellence.
OneSubsea’s global hub of expertise for subsea processing solutions is located in Bergen, based at Framo Engineering which was acquired by OneSubsea in 2013. OneSubsea, a joint venture between Schlumberger and Cameron, is a global company with more than 6 000 employees.
Emerson’s Center of Excellence within multiphase metering is located in Bergen and based on expertise in the company that was formerly Roxar and was acquired by Emerson in 2009. Emerson is a global provider of solutions to the process industry with around 130 000 employees.
NUI in Bergen operates the center for hyperbaric emergencies, with unique facilities for receiving hyperbaric life boats carrying divers needing hyperbaric treatment.
FMC Technologies’ base at Ågotnes is a regional headquarters for the Customer Support organisation. It acts as point-of-contact for engineering services, personnel, products and tools needed for installation and life-of-field operations related to subsea wells, and holds operational responsibility for bases in Angola, Australia, Canada, Scotland, the Ivory Coast and Nigeria. FMC Technologies is a global company with more than 19 000 employees.
The cluster has a well-developed and wide-ranging R&D community. Major educational establishments such as the University of Bergen, Bergen University College and the Norwegian School of Economics are leading centers of expertise with strong international links.
The University of Bergen covers all academic disciplines and has a particularly strong international standing within marine sciences, climate research, oceanography, meteorology and instrumentation.
Bergen University College is a bachelor level educational institution including all engineering topics. It also offers MSc-level education within some engineering disciplines.
The Norwegian School of Economics is the oldest and largest center for research and education in the fields of economics and business administration in Norway. It operates a Center of Research Based Innovation (SFI) on Service Innovation.
The key R&D organisations in the cluster are Christian Michelsen Research, UNI Research, Institute of Marine Research, SINTEF and Polytec.
Christian Michelsen Research, partly owned by the University of Bergen, is an industry-oriented R&D organization with particular expertise within instrumentation and sensor technology, energy conversion technologies, information technologies and technical safety. It has a Center of Research Based Innovation (SFI) within instrumentation.
UNI Research is the University of Bergen’s strategic research partner and carries out contract research within all academic fields covered by the University.
The Institute of Marine Research is Norway’s largest center of marine science and has a position as a global leader within its field.
Polytec is an independent research institute located in Haugesund, focusing on energy, environment, gas technology and safety.
SINTEF is the largest independent R&D organization in Northern Europe and carries out industrial research within all engineering disciplines.
The educational and research institutions operate a large and varied R&D infrastructure such as subsea test sites, advanced multiphase flow rigs, facilities for pressure and temperature testing, environmental laboratories, advanced chemical laboratories for fluid characterization and dedicated experimental facilities for enhanced oil recovery.