The University of Western Australia (UWA) has opened the new Centre for Long Subsea Tiebacks laboratory which enables the state to be positioned as a global energy hub.

The centre, which is jointly funded by industry majors Chevron and Woodside with about A$0.6m ($0.45m) per annum, will focus on long subsea tieback discoveries that will strengthen the industry’s understanding of hostile deep-sea conditions.

Subsea tiebacks are used to connect a new oil and gas discovery with an existing production facility. The new long subsea tieback technology development helps to unveil the economic ability of Western Australian gas fields which were not commercialised due to their location.

Chevron managing director Al Williams said: “Greater industry collaboration such as through the Centre for Long Subsea Tiebacks is a key part of strengthening our local capability and delivering significant benefits across local jobs and local content.

“With effective collaboration between industry and government, Perth can maximise the potential of its local industry and continue to grow as a global petroleum hub.”

The Centre for Long Subsea Tiebacks serves as the major focus for LNG Jobs Taskforce and generates jobs through the deployment of experience and technology. It also creates lots of jobs and career opportunities in Western Australia.

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Additionally, the laboratory provides research and technology under one roof. It will be highly integrated into industry and work on real-world challenges and solutions for the LNG sector, said UWA.

UWA vice-chancellor professor Dawn Freshwater said that the joint research centre has fulfilled the university’s aim of serving the Western Australian community.

Freshwater said: “Not only will it enhance Perth and WA as a centre of offshore engineering excellence, it aligns with UWA’s plans to expand and strengthen global partnerships, as we work to become a pivotal knowledge hub for the Indian Ocean Rim region.”