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Statoil and Research & Development Corporation invest in Arctic and harsh-environment R&D

Posted Tuesday, June 10, 2014

St. John's, June 10, 2014- Statoil and Research & Development Corporation invest in Arctic and harsh-environment R&D

The Research & Development Corporation (RDC) and Statoil Canada Ltd. are pleased to announce a collaborative investment in three new research and development projects with the potential to improve Arctic and harsh-environment offshore oil and gas operations in Newfoundland and Labrador and around the world. The total value of the projects is $3.9 million, including $2.4 million from Statoil Canada and $1.5 million from RDC.

"This collaborative initiative aligns well with our efforts to enhance the province's reputation as a real-world Arctic laboratory and a proving ground for harsh environment research and development.  Newfoundland and Labrador's deeply rooted culture in ocean innovation has turned what many view as challenges into opportunities and competitive advantages.   Surrounded by cold water and extreme weather conditions, there is no better place than Newfoundland and Labrador to develop new Arctic technologies.  As a government, our goal is to bolster economic development by positioning our province as the ideal staging ground for Arctic activities."

-       The Honourable Susan Sullivan, Minister of Innovation, Business and Regional Development and Minister Responsible for the Research & Development Corporation

The projects, funded through Statoil Canada's Arctic R&D Step-Up initiative and RDC's ArcticTECH program, are:

  • Kvaerner Canada Ltd. - Arctic subsea oil and gas separation and storage technology;
  • Rutter Inc. - oil and ice analysis system capable of automatically detecting and displaying ice features, and providing ice floe and pan drift prediction; and,
  • AMEC Americas Ltd. - integrated ice surveillance system that incorporates risk assessment, iceberg and sea-ice remote sensing technology, and ice forecasting technology.

Statoil announced the Arctic R&D Step-Up initiative in March 2013, inviting companies to submit proposals related to Arctic subsea production systems or remote sensing technology. The initiative was launched by Statoil Canada identifying RDC as a collaborative partner.

"Statoil is constantly seeking strategic, innovative solutions to meet its technology requirements, to build expertise and to solve key harsh environment challenges. We are pleased with the quality of the project proposals received through this initiative. I am confident that by working with these companies and RDC, we will enhance Arctic R&D capacity."

-       Atle Aadland, Vice President, Offshore Newfoundland, Statoil Canada

RDC's investment includes a $500,000 commitment for each of the three projects.

"These projects represent opportunities to not only develop new technologies, but also enhance business R&D capacity in Newfoundland and Labrador. In launching this initiative, Statoil recognized opportunities to build local capacity that aligned with their Arctic and harsh environment development opportunities and technology needs. I am confident this collaborative initiative will provide significant long-term benefits to the province."

-       Glenn Janes, Chief Executive Officer, RDC

For additional project details on the projects, please see the backgrounder below.

The Research & Development Corporation is a provincial Crown corporation responsible for improving Newfoundland and Labrador's research and development performance. RDC works with research and development stakeholders including business, academia and government agencies and departments to make strategic research and development related investments in people, research opportunities and infrastructure. For more information please visit

Statoil is an international energy company with operations in 36 countries. Building on more than 40 years of experience from oil and gas production on the Norwegian continental shelf, Statoil is committed to accommodating the world's energy needs in a responsible manner, applying technology and creating innovative business solutions.

A growing part of Statoil's Canadian operations is offshore Newfoundland, where Statoil has ambitions to become a producing operator. Statoil has built a strong position in the province, managing non-operated production and field developments as well as operating several exploration programs. Statoil is a partner in the Hibernia and Terra Nova fields as well as the Hebron and Hibernia South Extension developments. Statoil has made three discoveries in the Flemish Pass, including Bay du Nord, which was the world's largest oil discovery in 2013, with between 300-600 million barrels of high quality crude. For more information about Statoil visit


Media contacts:

Jennifer Tulk

Director of Communications
Department of Innovation, Business and Rural Development
709-729-4570, 728-4104


Alex Collins

Acting Lead, Communications

Statoil Canada Ltd.

709-738-8644,  769-8967

Chris Flanagan

Director of Marketing and Communications

Research & Development Corporation

709-758-1021, 709-691-1009 




Projects selected for collaborative funding from the Statoil Arctic R&D Step-Up initiative  and RDC's ArcticTECH program.

AMEC Americas Ltd.

AMEC Americas Ltd. (AMEC) is collaborating with Statoil Canada Ltd. (Statoil) to develop an integrated ice surveillance system that will fully incorporate three key elements: (1) iceberg and sea-ice remote sensing technology; (2) ice forecasting technology; and, (3) a data integration, information display, risk assessment, and ice management decision support platform. Successful outcomes of this project will assist Statoil in addressing active issues related to the company's operations in ice-covered and harsh environments.

AMEC is a focused supplier of consultancy, engineering and project management services to its customers in the world's oil and gas, mining, clean energy, environment and infrastructure markets. AMEC's Environment & Infrastructure office in St. John's provides oceanographic monitoring, weather forecasting and ice services. 

Kvaerner Canada Limited 

For this project Kvaerner Canada Limited (Kvaerner) will be collaborating with Statoil Canada Ltd. in researching concepts and designs for deepwater Arctic separation and storage facilities.  The facilities would be used in conjunction with a fixed or floating offshore production facility and would consist of concrete tanks mounted on the seabed.  The tanks would be used for separation of gas and water from oil and storage of stabilized/separated oil. 

Kvaerner is a leading provider of engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services, and delivers offshore installations and onshore plants for upstream oil and gas production around the world. Kvaerner ASA, through its subsidiaries and affiliates ("Kvaerner"), is an international contractor and preferred partner for oil and gas operators and other engineering and fabrication contractors.  Kvaerner has been present in Newfoundland since 1993, and is currently heavily engaged in the Hebron GBS project through Kiewit Kvaerner Contractors

Rutter Inc.

Rutter Inc. (Rutter) is collaborating with Statoil Canada Ltd. to develop comprehensive oil and ice analysis technology that will provide pervasive, 24-hour real time information for decision support in such tasks as ice defense planning, mission logistics, incident detection and response coordination. Successful outcomes of this project will result in a system capable of automatically detecting and displaying sea ice characteristics and properties as well as providing drift prediction for ice floes and pans.

Rutter is a St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador based company that specializes in the research and development of advanced radar signal processing, image processing and display technologies. Rutter applies these technologies in its portfolio of advanced radar systems, which are globally deployed to solve issues of ice, oil, and small target detection for marine, military and security/surveillance applications. Rutter also applies these technologies to radar based wave and current detection through its wholly owned subsidiary company, OceanWaveS GmbH, located in Germany.