please enter please select

Academic partnerships

We’ve established two National Research and Development Centres in partnership with University of Aberdeen and Robert Gordon University.

The National Centres represent a multi-million-pound investment to tackle current and future challenges in decommissioning and subsea engineering with world-class research and development, in partnership with industry.

The Centres connect R&D institutions and innovation centres across the UK, multiply the capability of universities and other organisations, such as the UK Catapult, and develop a world-class supply chain that delivers for the UK and internationally.

National Decommissioning Centre

The National Decommissioning Centre (NDC) is a £38 million partnership between the Net Zero Technology Centre and the University of Aberdeen.

100 offshore platforms and 5,700km of pipeline are forecast to be decommissioned or reused over the next decade on the UK Continental Shelf. With the North Sea Transition Authority estimating the total cost of oil and gas decommissioning to be £58bn, the NDC will help industry deliver the >35% cost reduction target set by the regulator in 2016. Combining industry expertise with academic excellence, the Centre aims to work in partnership with companies to become the global leader in R&D focused on reducing costs, extending field and asset life, and transforming the conventional approach to decommissioning. The NDC builds on the world-leading R&D capability at the University of Aberdeen in areas such as decommissioning technologies, predictive modelling, environmental assessment and the economics of decommissioning.

In September 2021, the NDC opened its marine simulation suite. The £1.6 million suite has been funded by the Scottish Government, the UK Government and NZTC through the Aberdeen City Region Deal. It can undertake detailed marine technology and operational simulations as well as complex data modelling and visualisation. These advanced capabilities provide a safe, virtual environment where users can simulate offshore and subsea operations in real time, such as the removal or installation of energy infrastructure, deploying a range of equipment and vessels to see which are best suited to the task and introducing challenging factors such as variable weather and tidal conditions.

National Subsea Centre

The National Subsea Centre (NSC) is the Centre of Excellence for subsea research and technology development, delivered through partnership between Net Zero Technology Centre and Robert Gordon University.

The NSC is harnessing NZTC’s extensive industry network alongside the University’s academic expertise, research capability and facilities to establish a world-class research and development centre. The spacious, state-of-the-art centre is designed to make sure team members and visitors have everything they need to help maximise their skills in all fields of work. Facilities at the NSC are a national resource and an important aspect of its unique place in the UK research infrastructure. Through close interaction with industry, government and the net zero finding ecosphere, the NSC aims to develop smart digital and engineering technologies to enable a faster, more cost-effective and sustainable transition to a net zero energy basin, locally in the North Sea and globally in energy environments.  


At present, the NSC is focused on four core research programmes: Transparent Ocean, Integrated Energy, Net Zero Operations and Cyber-Physical Systems. Team members work collaboratively to find innovative solutions to industry challenges in an environment where positive disruptive thinking is encouraged. All research undertaken at the NSC is driven by leaders with expertise spanning the fields of data science and AI, optimisation and machine learning, digital twins and simulation, machine vision and remote sensing, techno-economic modelling, smart materials and manufacturing, robotics, renewable energy systems and decarbonisation, marine ecosystems and sustainable environment modelling.

Learn more about Net Zero Technology Centre

We’re accelerating the future of energy by closing the gap in net zero technologies.

Learn more about us