ISO 9001 & UKAS Registered, Electron Beam Services in the United Kingdom ISO 9001 & UKAS Registered, Electron Beam Services in the United Kingdom

01/10/18
Although there is much talk of the maturity of oil and gas operations in the North Sea, the area West of Shetland offers a multitude of exploration opportunities.

Proactive Investors noted that this region is still considered a frontier area as far as oil and gas exploration goes, noting that recent discoveries have put it back at the front of people’s minds when it comes to further developing the UK’s oil and gas resources.

The news provider pointed to the recent announcement by Total SA, SSE PLC and INEOS that they had made a major new gas discovery in the area. It’s expected to contain 1 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, with Total explaining that existing infrastructure nearby would allow them to access it quickly and at a relatively low cost.

West of Shetland is on the UK continental shelf (UKCS), rather than in the North Sea. It’s in an area with more challenging conditions, which is why it’s comparatively unexplored.

Deirdre Michie, chief executive of Oil and Gas UK, said that the discovery by Total highlights the “exciting potential” of the area.

“As our Economic Report recently highlighted, an increase in drilling activity is key to unlocking the remaining potential of the UKCS,” Ms Michie added.

There were already indications that the big petroleum companies were increasing their activity in the West of Shetland. The Herald Scotland reported in January that exploration well numbers in the region were expected to grow in the coming year.

For example, Wood Mackenzie predicted that five wells would be drilled in West of Shetland in 2018, which would be the highest number in a single year since 2014, the newspaper revealed.

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26/09/18
Medical students will soon be learning how to operate surgical robots, virtual reality headsets and interactive anatomy stations when they undergo healthcare training.

This is because they will all feature at the Dundee Institute for Healthcare Simulation (DIHS) at the University of Dundee’s School of Medicine.

The facility opened today (September 20th) at Ninewells Hospital, having been developed by the university together with NHS Tayside and industry partners Medtronic.

Doctors will be able to learn both surgical and clinical training at the single-site facility, as well as keep up to date with the latest medical technology with the help of electron beam welding, transforming the lives of patients.

Chief medical officer for Scotland Dr Catherine Calderwood said: “This exciting development provides a safe environment for healthcare professionals to learn and rehearse both technical and non-technical healthcare skills, which will ultimately lead to better outcomes for patients.”

She added that the new centre “has the potential to make a significant impact locally, nationally and internationally”.

Co-director of the DIHS Dr Neil Harrison added that the centre will help Scotland maintain its position as “one of the world’s top providers of medical education”.

Technology is growing increasingly important in medical care, and health secretary Matt Hancock recently told BBC’s Newsbeat the NHS needs more apps to improve its communication with patients, make the service more convenient for the public and to make “doctors’ and nurses’ lives … easier”.
30/08/18
This month – on August 18th, in fact – noble gas helium celebrated its 150th birthday, initially discovered back in 1868 by French scientist Jules Janssen. He was looking at the sun’s atmosphere during a solar eclipse using an instrument that separated the light into a spectrum, later realising that he could observe this even without an eclipse – eventually spotting a yellow line in the resulting data.

Moving on from this a few months later, English scientist Norman Lockyer also spotted this yellow line, suggesting that it was in fact evidence of a new element… which was later christened helium.

According to Inside Science, it took a further 27 years before helium was found inside a mineral called cleveite, this time by chemists William Ramsay, Per Teodor Cleve and Nils Abraham Langlet.

At the turn of the century, helium was liquified for the first time ever, thanks to one Heike Kamerlingh Onnes. Liquid helium is very clever because it can be used to cool everything from new materials to superconducting magnets in MRI machines. This is apparently the biggest single use of helium today, making up approximately a quarter of all production.

Are we running out of helium?


Unfortunately, supplies of helium have been running short (which is why calls have been issued in the past to ban it for use in balloons and other non-essential pursuits), but a few years ago a huge source of helium gas was discovered in the Great Rift Valley in Tanzania.

According to New Scientist, the reserve was so big that it could fill around 600,000 Olympic swimming pools!
Need help with helium leak testing? Get in touch with us today.
23/08/18
Electron beam services have been used for a wide variety of applications over the years, but they haven’t yet been used on fruit.

That could be set to change as electron beams could be used to ensure that insects don’t make it to your fruit bowl along with your fruit.

We have all heard horror stories about people finding poisonous spiders on their bananas, but this arachnophobes nightmare could be prevented if electron beams were used to get rid of insects on imported fruit.

Ensuring that there are no insects on fruit is an important regulatory step for many sellers, but one that can prove costly. This is set to change as a researcher has discovered a way to target the DNA of insects, break it up and kill them, without affecting the fruit itself, as this has different DNA.

This technique also has the added benefit of being more ’natural’ as it doesn’t involve the use of various chemicals and additives in order to kill any insects that may be on the fruit.

The presence of insects on fruit is not only a problem for people with a hatred of creepy crawlies but it can also pose a threat to the ecosystem as invasive species can cause issues for native species. This is as they can present new challenges to native species that they cannot adapt rapidly enough to.

This is why many counties have strict bans on the import of unregulated live matter, be it plant or animal.
21/08/18
Those with shares in the oil industry have seen their assets plunge in value this week, as a result of huge stockpiles of the fluid in the USA.

Last week, the Energy Information Administration revealed that American crude inventories unexpectedly reported 6.81 million additional oil barrels last week – news that has hit the overall market hard.

Following this, light, sweet crude oil for September delivery came in three per cent lower yesterday (August 15th) at the New York Mercantile Exchange. This took it to the lowest level since June 6th, finishing at $65.01 (£51.17), which is significantly lower than last month’s figure of $74.

Similarly, brent crude dropped by 2.3 per cent to $70.76 per barrel, a decline of $1.70 on the ICE Futures Europe exchange.

Phil Flynn, senior market analyst for Price Futures Group, was quoted by Bloomberg as saying: “The headline number along with the negativity in the overall market was taken as a very bearish number. We’re reacting to the shock value of the big build.”

In addition to this, investors have become concerned about a trade war between America and China, as well as financial problems in Turkey, as the value of its currency falls.

Its lira has dropped 40 per cent against the US dollar recently, which could end up having an impact worldwide. Not only has Indian currency fallen to 70 rupees to $1 following this, but the peso in Argentina and the rand from South Africa have also declined in value, TheWeek.co.uk reported.

The Turkish crisis could also have a ripple effect on oil prices, with many investors fearing there could be a contagion among emerging markets.

For electron beam services for use in the oil industry, take a look at what we provide.
31/07/18
The application of electron beam welding in producing medical technology could be completely different in years to come, as tech is poised and ready to really revolutionise the healthcare sector. From robotics with the ability to perform the most precise surgeries to quick diagnostic systems, the future of medicine is an exciting space for technology.

However, the future of medical care may also involve more apps, if incoming health secretary Matt Hancock has anything to do with it. Taking over from Jeremy Hunt just this month, he told BBC’s Newsbeat that there was ‘loads to do’ when it came to the NHS adopting new technology such as apps.

Matt Hancock launched his own app in his previous role as an MP and Culture Secretary, so that he could better communicate with his constituents, however, it came under fire for some privacy flaws. He described getting the government to engage with new digital technology as a personal passion.

His comments also were not well received by opposition politicians and frontline NHS staff, who criticised funding issues which meant that current technology, such as computer desktops, don’t work properly and need upgrading.

Labour critics said that proper funding needs to be in place to make new technology, such as apps, fair and accessible by everyone: "The Conservative government has made big cuts to some NHS budgets like capital funding, which has meant the NHS just hasn't been able to take advantage of new technologies."

Matt Hancock was speaking at the launch of a new scheme looking to place hundreds of newly trained mental health staff around schools and colleges in the UK.
17/07/18
Sutherland, on the north coast of Scotland, is set to be the site for the UK’s first spaceport. The project was announced by the UK Space Agency, which is committing £2.5 million of funding towards the development of a vertical launch pad here.

Highlands and Islands Enterprise is leading the project and the aim is to have the first launches from the location as early as the 2020s, the BBC reported.

The government agency is also looking into potential sites for a horizontal launch pad, with Cornwall, Glasgow Prestwick and Snowdonia the locations aiming to develop such facilities. A further grant of £2 million was also announced to further horizontal spaceport development across Britain.

Greg Clark, business secretary, commented: “The UK’s thriving space industry, research community and aerospace supply chain put the UK in a leading position to develop both vertical and horizontal launch sites.”

Secretary of state for Scotland David Mundell added that this project in Sutherland will create hundreds of jobs and boost the region’s economy.

The BBC noted that American aerospace firm Lockheed Martin will be part of a consortium of aerospace experts working closely with Highlands and Islands Enterprise on the project.

According to the news provider, one of the reasons why this development is possible in the UK is because a number of firms in the country have pioneered the launch of small satellites.

Having a spaceport is a big step that would put these businesses at the forefront of the industry because they would be able to offer a full package of services, from the design and build of a satellite to its launch.

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18/06/18
It’s no secret that sending satellites into orbit is a costly process. What’s more, the size of the rocket required to launch a small satellite is often considerably larger than the payload itself, making the process costly and inefficient.

There’s also a growing awareness of the rising levels of space debris as a result of hundreds of rocket launches from Earth over the years, but now new technology is being developed that could help limit this problem.

A team at the University of Glasgow is working with researchers at Oles Honchar Dnipro National University in Ukraine to develop so-called ‘self-eating’ rockets for the launch of small satellites.

The idea behind the technology being developed is that the engine used to launch the satellite would effectively consume itself, rather than needing to carry extra fuel. The other advantage to using an autophage engine such as this is that it would free up more space for cargo, as well as reducing the debris being sent into orbit.

Dr Patrick Harkness, senior lecturer at the University of Glasgow’s school of engineering and leader of the university’s contribution to the project, explained that there is still a lot of work to do before it can be put into practice though.

“While we’re still at an early stage of development, we have an effective engine testbed in the laboratory in Dnipro, and we are working with our colleagues to improve it still further,” he said. Currently, rocket operations have been sustained for 60 seconds with this new engine in the laboratory.

A recent post for Satellite Pro ME cited statistics that indicate there are currently 29,000 useless objects greater than 10cm in volume that are drifting in the Earth’s orbit, adding that these pose a risk to operational satellites as well as spacecraft such as the International Space Station.

For assistance with electron beam welding for specialist engineering projects, contact us today.
18/05/18
UPS, the international package delivery giant, has announced its intention to supply 35 state-of-the-art electric delivery vehicles to its logistics bases in London and Paris, for primary tests by the end of this year. The "delivery vans of the future" sport the iconic brown paint job of UPS along with fluid structural lines and an engine which is 100% motorised by an electric power source.

This ultra-light weight models were designed by the British company Arrival - specialists in the manufacturing of electric light commercial vehicles (E-LCVs). All vehicles will have advanced driving aids, (systems developed to automate, adapt and enhance vehicle systems for safety and better driving), have a capability of travelling 150 miles, and include "hyper-connected cockpits" to make life easier for delivery drivers.

UPS intends for 25% of all new vehicles purchased by 2025 to be exclusively non-fossil powered, i.e. diesel or petrol engines; rather, choosing to invest in hybrid electric, hydro-hybrid, ethanol, compressed natural gas (CNG), liquefied natural gas (LNG) and propane powered LCVs. The company already has a fleet of 9000 vehicles, across its international markets, operating on "alternative fuels". The company is also committed to achieving commendable green energy targets of 25% of its energy mix to come from renewable energy sources by 2025.

Electron Beam Services are proud to be part of the manufacturing sector at this point in time, as many of our clients in the automotive and general engineering industries​ are going through similar phases of technological development. Our company has equally been dedicated to staying at the cutting-edge of manufacturing techniques and standards. In keeping with this commitment, EBS have been ISO approved since 1994 and have recently attained approval to AS9100 rev D.

For more information, please take a moment to view our electron beam services or contact us today using our online contact form.
15/05/18
Touchstone Exploration has recently published its latest operational and drilling update, showing that production increased by 21 per cent in the first quarter of 2018, compared to the same period a year earlier.

This meant that the organisation was producing an average of 1,543 barrels per day between January and March this year, while in April this year average production hit 1,669 barrels per day.

New wells in Trinidad and Tobago have helped the organisation boost its production, with the first five wells of its 2018 program drilled and cased so far. Of these, two have been completed and are currently producing oil.

Two wells have been drilled in the Forest Reserve WD-8 block, while a further two were also drilled in the company’s Coora 2 Block.

It added that it is also preparing two locations in the Coora 1 Block for drilling in the coming weeks, with the two new wells situated in follow-up locations for its successful CO-368 and CO-369 wells which were drilled last year.

President and chief executive officer at Touchstone Paul Baay commented: “We are excited to see the stabilised production results from these wells as we accelerate to our target of 2,000 barrels per day.”

Earlier this month, Energy Voice reported that the energy industry is planning to drill 16 high-impact wells in the UK and Norway this year, with the aim of producing 3.7 million barrels of oil equivalent from these sources.

If you need electron beam services for your oil exploration project, contact us today to find out more about our expertise.