North Sea investment

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Air Products has increased its investment in its North Sea oil and gas services to more than £7m as part of plans to improve global supply and service.

The investment will upgrade Air Products's North Sea facility to offer diving gases such as Heliox and diving oxygen, as well as gases used in subsea engineering and other offshore applications.

The group has also upgraded its Aberdeen facility to include a liquid-helium storage container and two large compressor units capable of filling up to eight 64-cylinder quads of diving gas mixtures per day.

The site will also be used to produce nitrogen for use in leak detection, pressure testing, purging and hydraulic systems applications in addition to gas mixtures for offshore construction.

Gary Homewood, Air Products’s business manager for offshore Europe and Africa, said: ‘Sustained investment in infrastructure improvements and exploration on the UK Continental Shelf [UKCS], backed by the government’s commitment to support the industry in increasing production from marginal oil fields, has led to an increasing demand for quality diving gases.

‘The North Sea oil and gas industry continues to develop, despite the economic downturn and a recent dip in oil prices, and experts have estimated that reserves containing upwards of 30 billion barrels of oil remain. The local industry is gaining recognition as a world-class example of oil and gas engineering and supply-chain excellence.

‘Having extended our services and increased our capacity at Aberdeen, we are well placed to support the industry as it continues to develop by providing a complete range of gas products and services that all come with globally recognised assurances of quality and safety,’ he added.

Homewood continued: ‘The North Sea is a mature marketplace with an established offshore industry, including many of the world’s leading oil and gas companies as well as a host of highly experienced operators. Where better to invest in a supply facility, offering total gas solutions on a global basis, backed by the highest standards of service and quality.’