Oil company invests in Tromsø University


n Tromsø: Head of Research Hans Konrad Johnsen and CEO Erik Haugane. Photo: SCANPIX/www.detnor.no

n Tromsø: Head of Research Hans Konrad Johnsen and CEO Erik Haugane. Photo: SCANPIX/www.detnor.no

Support for Geological Research in the north

Det norske has made a commitment to support the Faculty of Sciences at the University of Tromsø by funding a grant of NOK 8.7 million,  for the purchase of an advanced XRF scanner. 

Det norske oljeselskap ASA has signed a research agreement with the Faculty of Sciences at the University of Tromsø. The agreement includes purchase and use of advanced scientific equipment, a so-called XRF scanner. The company will also fund the position of a researcher at the department of Geology, to ensure qualified operation of the scanner. 

According to Det norske’s CEO Erik Haugane, the agreement is a confirmation of the company’s ambitions for Northern Norway: “In this way we hope to strengthen research and development within the petroleum sector in Northern Norway. This is important to optimize spin-off effects when petroleum activities gradually move northwards. From our Harstad office, we put special emphasis on activities in the Barents Sea.”

Increased Knowledge

With the XRF scanner, the chemical composition of sediment cores can be determined with high accuracy.  The scanner is the second of its kind in Norway, and will be of great importance for marine geological research at the department of Geology. It will be installed in a container, enabling its use on research cruises. The new scanner is a useful tool to explore connections between the composition of seabed sediments and their origin. The results will contribute to improved understanding of how the Continental Shelf areas, outside Northern Norway, the Barents Sea and around Svalbard, are formed, and how the depositional environment has changed during different climatic periods.   

A Substantial Amount

The agreement is for four years, with a total amount of NOK 8.7 million. Det norske is involved in several research activities where an XRF scanner can provide valuable information. Thus it will be of interest to use the scanner for other activities, amounting to additional NOK 2 – 3 million during the four year period.

Det norske collaborates with the University of Tromsø because the university has strong research groups that share Det norske’s interest in creating increased activity in the North. The company has great confidence in the potential of these areas, and aims for activities in the north working with local professionals and specialists. The collaboration will strengthen existing expertise and improve the quality of education in Northern Norway, Erik Haugane says. Haugane was once himself a geology student in Tromsø. He emphasizes that Det norske, during the last six months, has signed a number of agreements, of considerable amounts for research, education and industrial development in Northern Norway.

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