A car manufacturer and an aerospace research and development body are amongst those joining forces with the oil and gas industry at a north-east technology conference and exhibition next month.
Nissan Motor Manufacturing and the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) will attend the Technology Showcase, organised by the Industry Tehcnology Facilitator (ITF) and Oil and Gas UK, in Aberdeen on March 4.
The event will host a conference led by ITF’s chief executive, Dr Patrick O’Brien, and opened by Nissan’s general manager of innovation and performance products, Jerry Hardcastle.
Mr Hardcastle is also the chairman of the UK Automotive Council’s technology group, and his presentation will focus on UK automotive strategy for growth and sustainability.
He said: “Since forming the council six or seven years ago we have seen a much more collaborative approach from our industry. We aim to develop a stronger UK supply base, driven by a common agenda through facilitating collaboration opportunities. The council is developing future technology roadmaps for low carbon vehicles and fuels, and promoting the UK as the leading centre for the development of technology.
“I hope I can use my experience with the UK Automotive Council to demonstrate how industry-government collaboration has been vital to us achieving the most productive automotive labour market in the EU and why this approach should be considered by the oil and gas sector.”
The programme for the conference includes “Tech Talks” and interactive sessions during which operating companies and developers can outline their technology needs and possible solutions.
ATI’s chief operating officer, Dr Ruth Mallors-Ray OBE, will also attend to speak at the event.
Today she said there are “parallels” between the oil and gas sector and the aerospace industry.
Dr Mallors-Ray said: “While all industries believe it is different, both aerospace and the oil and gas sectors have a large number of parallels, such as requiring a high skill set and working in challenging conditions. We have been able to secure more than £2billion through industry and government funding.
“I want to demonstrate how we, as a technology institute, are supporting our industry and relay how the oil and gas industry can work together with stakeholders to secure similar financial support as it looks to the future.”
Technology director of the National Composites Centre, Professor Mike Hinton, will also attend to discuss composites within the context of oil and gas, while Neale Stidolph – of Lockheed Martin – will discuss advanced technology.
Oil and Gas UK’s operations director, Oonagh Werngren, said: “We recognise that companies are operating in a very demanding business environment but at difficult times like this it is all the more important to learn from other sectors about technology development and its positive impact on their industries. We hope this event will be well supported.”