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The National IOR Centre of Norway

The National IOR Centre provides solutions for improved oil recovery on the Norwegian continental shelf through academic excellence and close cooperation with the industry.

Publisert: Endret:
Centre director

Ying Guo



External financing

Research Council of Norway: 10 mill. / Industry partners: 2 mill.



Industry partners

ConocoPhillips, Aker BP, Vår Energi, Equinor, Neptune Energy, Lundin, Halliburton, Schlumberger, and Wintershall DEA

Research partners


PhD students / postdocs

30 / 20

7 years of research and still going strong
Smart Solutions for Future IOR

About us

PhD student Tijana Voake. Photo: Marius Vervik

Awarded by the Research Council of Norway after a national competition, the Centre started up in December 2013. The Centre's goal is to develop new knowledge and technology in order to increase recovery beyond projections under today’s field operation plans.

The IOR Centre is led by University of Stavanger, with research institutes NORCE and IFE as core partners. Several other research groups, and 9 oil and service companies, complete the Centre's list of partners and collaborators.

The Centre will contribute to the implementation of environmentally friendly technologies for improving oil recovery on the Norwegian continental shelf. Please visit the research submenu for a detailed overview of our research tasks and projects.

Secondary objectives include:

  • Robust upscaling of recovery mechanism observed on pore and core scale to field scale
  • Optimal injection strategies based on total oil recovered, economic and environmental impact
  • Educating some 30 PhDs and 20 postdocs during the eight-year period

Our research

Mobile and immobile oil / EOR

Understanding, modeling, and upscaling the microscopic and macroscopic displacement efficiency when various EOR fluids are injected into a porous rock.

Reservoir characterisation

Theme 2 works with the integration of field data such as pressure, temperature, seismic data, tracer data, geophysical data, and geological data into a field scale simulation model.

Education and training

Students, PhD candidates and postdocs play a vital part in The National IOR Centre of Norway. No less than 25 per cent of the Centre's budget is reserved for education and training.



IORCoreSim is a tool for simulating the combined effect of low salinity water injection and polymer flooding on oil recovery.

Big blocks of chalk is used when preparing cores for lab experiments. Photo: Marius Vervik

IORCoreSim can help reduce the amount of polymer used when producing oil, thus saving the environment and achieving better utilization of the oil reservoir. For this work, PhD student Oddbjørn Nødland and senior scientist Arild Lohne at NORCE won SR-bank's Innovation Prize 2017.​

IORCoreSim has been developed in the Centre. It was previously known as BugSim, a simulator for predicting the behavior of microbes during water flooding.

The tool is unique in the sense that it can simulate the combined effect of low salinity water injection and polymer flooding on oil recovery.

Senior scientist Arild Lohne has been the main developer. During the Centre lifetime Lohne has added functionality to simulate the injection of non-Newtonian fluids, such as polymers. Professor Aksel Hiorth has added functionality to simulate geochemical interactions.

Lohne's and Hiorth's PhD student Oddbjørn Nødland has improved the numerical codes and tested the simulator against core scale experiments. Nødland is now a postdoc in the Centre.

IOR Centre disputations


Field scale evaluation and history matching

The economic feasibility of implementing new IOR methods on a field needs to be evaluated, preferably taking the uncertainty in the reservoir description into account.

A model of the Norne reservoir in the North Sea.

While optimizing future production, environmental constraints need to be considered. The evaluation will be based on history matched reservoir models. An important focus in this research area is to develop better methods for full field history matching using 4-D seismic data. The history matching is done using ensemble-based methods, but we consider use of different types of seismic data for inversion. Some focus is on compacting reservoirs. Here we both study how to improve the interpretation of 4D seismic data for the location of water and pressure fronts and investigate the coupling between fluid flow and geomechanics linking 4D seismic observations to stress exchange in the reservoir and surrounding rock. A substantial part of the work on history matching is using real data, an open data set for the Norne field and data from Ekofisk that has been made available for selected studies within the IOR Centre.

The Centre's first full field study on history matching utilizing 4D seismic data has been successfully completed. The chosen field was the Norne field, using the data set available for research purposes. The results are being presented in different forums, and are attracting attention, as it demonstrates a full workflow for assisted history matching using 4D seismic data.

Research news

Rystad: Increased value creation

RCN supported petroleum research has triggered large volumes of oil resources. Ensemble Kalman Filter technology, one of the prioritized research fields at the Centre, is estimated to account for a significant part of the reserve increase.

Great expectations from RCN

The IOR Centre of Norway is supported by the The Research Council of Norway (RCN) with 10 million NOK each year. Therefore, RCN is following the Centre closely. We report twice a year, we have annual contact meetings and they come to visit us every second year.

How to use the data set from Lundin?

Lundin shares all the data from one field, Edvard Grieg, with the researchers at The National IOR Centre of Norway. But how to use this gift in the best possible way? The first PhD project using data from the Edvard Grieg field is now up and running.

Management team

Faculty of Science and Technology

Department of Energy Resources
Faculty of Science and Technology

Department of Energy Resources
Faculty of Science and Technology

Department of Energy Resources
Faculty of Science and Technology

Department of Energy Resources
Professor emeritus

Randi Valestrand

Research director, NORCE

Sissel O. Viig

Director of Field Implementation, IFE

Thierry Laupretre

Chair of Board, AkerBP

Robert Moe

Head of Technical Committee, ConocoPhillips

Events & conferences


Save the date! The sixth IOR NORWAY is arranged 26-28 April 2021. The venue is as always Tjodhallen, University of Stavanger.

Kick-off for Delivery Forums

With only one and a half years left of the first phase of the Centre, it's time to concretize our deliverables to the industry.

National Science Week

The National Science Week (Forskningsdagene) takes place at the end of September every year. See the programme for this year's events.


At the OG21-forum decision makers in the petroleum industry meet to discuss the continued importance of technology.

Industry partners
Research partners

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