A Petrobras-led consortium is moving ahead with the application of a “game-changing” technology that achieves dense-phase separation of carbon dioxide-rich associated gas, significantly boosting production of crude oil.

A backdrop of low oil prices and capital expenditure cuts has not deterred Brazil’s state-controlled oil company or its partners in the Libra consortium from investing in a planned prototype of Hi-Sep, a patented technology designed with the country's prolific pre-salt offshore fields in mind.

Ahead of a full-scale prototype planned for the Mero field, in Brazil’s Santos basin, several subsea contractors in the battle for the prestigious contract are now moving ahead with de-risking tests at facilities in Brazil and Norway.