This programme will equip you with the essential knowledge for engineering careers in the oil, gas and petrochemical sectors.
Upon completion of the course you will have gained a comprehensive understanding of oil refining and associated downstream processing technologies, operations and economics; process safety and operations integrity; and methods for the optimal design of process systems.
You will learn about the general economics of the energy sector, oil exploration and production, as well as renewable energy systems.
Furthermore, your study of the various aspects of petroleum refining will be augmented by unique work assignments at a virtual oil-refining and chemical company.
This programme is studied full-time over one academic year and part-time students must study at least two taught technical modules per academic year. It consists of eight taught modules and a dissertation.
Example module listing
The following modules are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that not all modules described are compulsory and may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.
The programme aims to provide a highly vocational education that equips the students with the essential knowledge and skills required to work as competent engineers in the petrochemical sector.
This is to be achieved through combining proper material in two popular and complementary topics: process systems engineering and petroleum refining. The key objective is to develop a sound understanding of oil refining and downstream processing technologies, process safety and operation integrity, as well as systems methods for the optimal design of process systems.
A balanced curriculum is provided with essential modules from these two areas supplemented by a flexible element by way of elective modules that permit students to pursue subjects of preference relevant to their backgrounds, interests and/or career aspirations.
An integrated approach is taken so as to provide a coherent view that explores the interrelationships between the various components of the programme.
Knowledge and understanding
The programme aims to develop the knowledge and understanding in both petroleum refining and systems engineering. The key learning outcomes include:
Intellectual / cognitive skills
The programme aims to strengthen cognitive skills of the students, particularly in the aspects of problem definition, knowledge and information acquiring, synthesis, and creativity, as collectively demonstrable through the successful completion of the research dissertation.
The key learning outcomes include the abilities to:
Professional practical skills
The programme primarily aims to develop skills for applying appropriate methods to the design and operation of petroleum refining processes. The key learning outcomes include the abilities to:
Key / transferable skills
The programme aims to strengthen a range of transferable skills that are relevant to the needs of existing and future professionals in knowledge intensive industries irrespective of their sector of operation.
The key learning outcomes include the further development of the skills in the following areas:
We often give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities.
In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV.
This is the first masters level degree course that brings academic rigour and focus to this multi-disciplinary subject. The MSc in Flow Assurance for Oil and Gas Production is suitable for engineering and applied science graduates who wish to embark on successful careers in the oil and gas industry. Our strategic links with industry ensures that all the materials taught on the course are relevant, timely and meets the needs of organisations competing within the sector. This industry-led education makes our graduates some of the most desirable the world for energy companies to recruit.
In the foreseeable future, hydrocarbon (oil and gas) will still be the major energy source irrespective of the developments in renewable and nuclear energy. The term ‘flow assurance’ was coined by Petrobras in the early 1990s meaning literally “guarantee of flow.” It covers all methods to ensure the safe and efficient delivery of hydrocarbons from the well to the collection facilities. It is a multi-disciplinary activity involving a number of engineering disciplines including mechanical, chemical, process, control, instrumentation and software engineering.
Previously uneconomical fields are now being exploited - oil and gas are produced in hostile environments from deep water to the Arctic. As conventional oil reserves decline, companies are developing unconventional oil fields with complex fluid properties. All of these factors mean that flow assurance plays an increasingly important role in the oil and gas industry.
The MSc in Flow Assurance for Oil and Gas Production is made up of nine compulsory taught modules (eight compulsory and one optional from a selection of three), a group project and an individual research project.
In addition to management, communication, team work and research skills, each student will attain at least the following outcomes from this degree course:
- Develop a professional ability to undertake a critical appraisal of technical and/or commercial literature.
- Demonstrate an ability to manage research studies, and plan and execute projects in the area of oil and gas production technology and flow assurance.
- Use of the techniques appropriate for the management of a oil and gas production and transport systems.
- Gain an in-depth understanding of the technical, economic and environmental issues involved in the design and operation of oil and gas production and transport systems.
The group project runs between February and April and is designed to give students invaluable experience of delivering a project within an industry structured team. The project is sponsored by industrial partners who provide particular problems linked to their plant operations. Projects generally require the group to provide a solution to the operational problem. This group project is shared across the Process Systems Engineering MSc, Flow Assurance MSc and Carbon Capture and Transport MSc, giving the added benefit of gaining new insights, ways of thinking, experience and skills from students with other backgrounds.
During the project you will develop a range of skills including learning how to establish team member roles and responsibilities, project management, and delivering technical presentations. All groups submit a written report and deliver a presentation to the industry partner. Part-time students will take an additional elective module instead of the group project.
It is clear that the modern design engineer cannot be divorced from the commercial world. In order to provide practice in this matter, a poster presentation will be required from all students. This presentation provides the opportunity to develop presentation skills and effectively handle questions about complex issues in a professional manner.
Recent Group Projects include:
- Waste water treatment process design
- A new operation mode design for a gas processing plant.
The individual research project allows students to delve deeper into a specific area of interest. Our industrial partners often put forward practical problems or areas of development as potential research topics. For part-time students, their research project is usually undertaken in collaboration with their place of work. The individual project takes place from April/May to August.
Recent Individual Research Projects include:
- Separation – from Subsea to Topside
- Evaluation of Multiphase Flow Metering
- Multiphase Jet Pumps
- Sand Transport in Undulating Terrains.
The taught programme for the Flow Assurance masters is generally delivered from October to March and is comprised of eight compulsory modules, and one optional module to select from a choice of four. The modules are delivered over one to two weeks of intensive delivery with the later part of the module being free from structured teaching to allow time for more independent learning and reflection. Students on the part-time programme will complete all of the compulsory modules based on a flexible schedule that will be agreed with the course director.
Taught modules: 40%; Group project: 20% (dissertation for part-time students); Individual Research Project: 40%.
This MSc degree is accredited by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE).
To help students find and secure appropriate funding we have created a funding finder where you can search by filtering the results to suit your needs. Scholarships and bursaries are available to contribute towards fees, and/or living costs for graduates applying for full-time Masters courses in the themes of Water, Energy and Environment. Please see below for the specific funding that is available and the eligibility criteria. Visit the funding finder.
Cranfield Postgraduate Loan Scheme (CPLS) - https://www.cranfield.ac.uk/Study/Postgraduate-degrees/Fees-and-funding/Funding-opportunities/cpls/Cranfield-Postgraduate-Loan-Scheme
The Cranfield Postgraduate Loan Scheme (CPLS) is a funding programme providing affordable tuition fee and maintenance loans for full-time UK/EU students studying technology-based MSc courses.
There is considerable global demand in the oil and gas industry for flow assurance specialists with in-depth technical knowledge and practical skills. The industry led education makes our graduates some of the most desirable for recruitment in this sector. The depth and breadth of the course equips graduates with knowledge and skills to tackle one of the most demanding challenges to secure our energy resource. Graduates of the course can also be recruited in other upstream and downstream positions. Their knowledge can additionally be applied to the petrochemical, process and power industries.
If you are considering a career or enterprise in oil and gas management or its associated supply chain this degree draws from the strengths of both academics at University of Aberdeen and industry professionals in the city who have helped to shape the programmes and modules from their learning and experiences. The university offers knowledge spanning fifty years in oil and gas production and commercialisation. The university has worked closely with the industry since its inception in Aberdeen city and in the 1970s to provide advanced level learning in the sector.
The programme uniquely offers a great range of knowledge across Geology and Engineering, Business and Law specific to the oil and gas industry but applicable to other similar industries with similar features. The degree offers great value in terms of the range of disciplines it covers and it will open up a range of careers internationally. It also gives you the confidence and knowledge to start up an enterprise yourself or work in mid to senior management within an already established company. Business and Law modules will be very useful to a great many commercial situations and sectors if you choose to apply your knowledge in the future. This also applies to Geology and Engineering which are also subjects in themselves when it comes to employment options.
This programme is ideal for small specialist companies working with National Oil Companies and energy ministries to commercialise innovation in science and technology and improve hydrocarbon exploration. It combines science with law politics and economics. Alumni work internationally across the supply chain and some of them have started their own businesses.
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*Please be advised that some programmes have different tuition fees from those listed above and that some programmes also have additional costs.
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This course is ideally situated to take advantage of the oil and gas industry in Aberdeen city and its industry experts who also have a strong input into the programme content and structure. This combination of academic overview and industry expertise ensures that you have a good range of skills and knowledge which is applicable to the global oil and gas and energy market so ideal if you are international or work or want to work internationally. Your skills are ideally placed to scope out maximising oil field recovery from declining field areas on top of upstream geoscience knowledge from initial exploration to mature and declining field recovery.
Aberdeen has been running this programme since 1973 to the current day, learning with the energy industry which is located in Aberdeen itself. This means that the programme is not only robust drawing on historical learning relevant to the current day, but highly regarded internationally. This strength of knowledge feeds down directly to you as a student and afterwards as a highly trained professional within the energy market.
Regarded as the best of its kind in the world the programme gives you vocational training in geoscience skills for minerals exploration and production, including: seismic interpretation, petrophysical analysis, geochemical evaluation, sedimentology, structural analysis, and reservoir modelling.
Find out more detail by visiting the programme web page
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This course is one of the premier international applied petroleum geoscience courses. Since the inception of the course in 1985 its graduates have an unparalleled employment record in the petroleum industry both in the UK and worldwide. In addition our graduates are highly sought after for further PhD research in the petroleum geosciences.
● Recognised by NERC - 5 MSc studentships each year covering fees, fieldwork and maintenance.
● Recognised by Industry - Industry scholarships
● We offer highly focused teaching and training by internationally recognised academic experts as well as by visiting staff from the petroleum industry.
The course covers the applications of basin dynamics and evolution to hydrocarbon exploration and production. The course is modular in form providing intensive learning and training in geophysics, tectonics and structural geology, sequence stratigraphy and sedimentology, hydrocarbon systems, reservoir geology, remote sensing and applied geological fieldwork.
The MSc course provides ‘state of the art’ training in -
● 3D seismic interpretation and 3D visualization;
● Fault analysis and fault-sealing;
● Seismic sequence stratigraphy;
● Applied sedimentology;
● Well log analysis;
● Remote sensing analysis of satellite and radar imagery;
● Analysis of gravity and magnetic data;
● Numerical modelling of sedimentation and tectonics;
● Applied structural geology;
● Geological Fieldwork.
● Transferable skills learned during the course include
project planning, presentation techniques, report writing and compilation, team working skills, spreadsheet and statistical analyses, GIS methods as well as graphics and visualization techniques.
● The full time MSc course runs for 50 weeks. The first half comprises one and two week course modules as well as group projects and fieldwork. The second half of the MSc course consists of an individual research project usually carried out in conjunction with the petroleum industry or related institutions such as international geological surveys.
● Part time study over 24 months is also available
● Each year independent projects are arranged with new data sets from industry – some students work in the offices of the company whereas other may use our excellent in-house facilities. All independent projects are supervised by faculty members with additional industry supervision where appropriate.
Facilities include –
● Dedicated Modern Teaching Laboratories
● 14 Dual Screen Unix Seismic Workstations
● PC and Macintosh Workstations
● Internationally Recognised Structural Modelling Laboratories
● Advanced Sedimentological Laboratories
The MSc course also greatly benefits from dynamic interaction with internationally recognised research groups within the Geology Department including –
● Project EAGLE – Evolution of the African and Arabian rift system – Professor Cindy Ebinger
● Southeast Asia Research Group – Tectonic Evolution and Basin Development in SE Asia – Professor Robert Hall
● Numerical Modelling Research Group – Numerical Modelling of Tectonics and Sedimentation – Dr Dave Waltham
● Fault Dynamics Research Group – Dynamics of Fault Systems in Sedimentary Basins – Professor Ken McClay
The 2005 MSc graduates went on to employment with Shell, BP, Amerada Hess, Gaz de France, OMV (Austria), Star Energy, First Africa Oil, Badley Ashton, ECL, PGS, Robertsons, PGL, Aceca, and to PhD research at Royal Holloway and Barcelona.
Since 2001, 85% of our graduates have gone in to work in the oil industry, 10% into geological research and 5% into environmental/engineering jobs.
Accommodation is available on campus in en-suite study bedrooms grouped in flats of eight, each with a communal kitchen and dining space.
Subsistence Costs ~£9,000 pa (including Hall of Residence fees of c. £4,500 for a full year)
APPLICATIONS can be made on line at http://www.rhul.ac.uk/Registry/Admissions/applyonline.html