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Ecosse Subsea Systems nears completion of £500,000 pioneering tool

Posted on 08.03.2011 - 12:00 EST in GENERAL NEWS by Rons_ROV_Links

Ecosse Subsea Systems nears completion of £500,000 pioneering toolAfter five years of development and investment of £500,000, Ecosse Subsea Systems' SCAR specialist trenching plough is generating considerable interest from around the world with work currently being tendered for in the North Sea, Brazil and India.

Further interest is anticipated following a recent visit to the Peterhead fabrication site by a selection of oil and gas operators and contractors, wind farm owners and power cable manufacturers. In addition, SCAR is to be exhibited at next month's Subsea 2011 event at the AECC in Aberdeen.

Aberdeen-based Ecosse Subsea Systems employed Marine Developments Ltd and Dales Engineering Services Ltd in Peterhead to build SCAR, whilst the patented detail design was completed by PDMS Energy on Teeside.

SCAR is a specialist trenching plough which is designed to operate from vessels of opportunity, especially anchor handlers. Designed in consultation with the industry, SCAR offers low mobilisation costs and no requirement for a crane or A-frame for launch, SCAR presents a reliable and cost-effective alternative to conventional towed ploughs and trenchers. The multi-pass plough's ability to make multiple cuts in the same trench without limit makes it unique.

Research and development of the equipment was given a financial boost thanks to a £30,000 Scottish Enterprise grant.

Ecosse Subsea Systems was established in 1996 to provide subsea technology, engineering consultancy and specialist expert personnel for the subsea oil and gas markets around the world. The company has a staff of 15 and is headed by Turriff-born engineering expert Mike Wilson who has 25 years of experience and has worked in countless countries around the globe on trenching and pipelay projects.

Mike Wilson - a finalist in the Emerging Talent category of the 2011 Subsea UK Business Awards - said: "During the research and development and beach trials of SCAR, we engaged with a selection of operators and contractors to see what they would like from a new plough and the design was reviewed by industry geotechnical experts.

"Many operators commented that current offerings in the market did not meet their expectations. They universally said that reduced costs and increased quality were priorities along with increased reliability, less weather downtime and improved availability and we have addressed all these issues in the design and operating methodology of SCAR. Contractors and operators want to take trenching off the critical path of their projects and this is one of the key benefits of pre-cutting."

Mike added: "SCAR is one of many technologies we have waiting in the wings and the revenue we hope it will generate will go back into developing these as well as growing the staff at Ecosse Subsea Systems."

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