It was their innovative adaptation of the Leopard to perform the complex task that made a quick and cost-effective solution possible, suggests the company.
Saab Seaeye says Dive Works is showing the world how big savings can be made in the oil and gas industry from technological advances in electric underwater robotics, as smaller, smarter and more powerful vehicles are adapted to undertake much larger tasks.
Dive Works’ managing director Andrew Ford applauds the Saab Seaeye Leopard’s overall design: “Our Leopard has completed over 750 dives, it is the most powerful ROV of its size in the world and we continue to maximise its capacity in extreme conditions and on extreme tasks with on-going success.”
Owning and operating such a powerful, smart-sized system has allowed Dive Works to employ a new 34m, specialist, high speed, smaller-than-usual support vessel, that is custom-configured and ideal for emergency response.
“We now have a vessel with a speed of 19 knots which can be mobilised and reach a job 400 miles away within 24 hours – and go places big vessels can’t go. We can access ports nearer the worksite, move closer inshore and get closer to the job – and a speedy vessel means we can stay out longer, thus extending the weather window and saving the client money,” says Andrew Ford.
Dive Works has also successfully installed a live video feed from their Leopard where clients can log on from anywhere in the world and view the work being done subsea. This advanced technical application allows clients to make real-time decisions, which saves significant time and money.
There is a lot to like about the Saab Seaeye Leopard, Andrew Ford says. “The 30-tonne complete package has a much smaller footprint, faster mobilisation time, lower maintenance costs, and needs far fewer staff at the worksite.”
He goes on to list the tasks successfully completed by the Leopard:
- Penetrated deep inside a complex platform structure to perform heavy-duty repair work and deploy underwater rigging to locations larger vehicles could not access.
- Performed a 490 km long PNG pipeline survey fitted with camera booms and wheeled skid.
- Operated a crawler to inspect welds on a number of platforms in extremely shallow water.
- Worked a 36,000psi water blaster for cleaning platform legs to bright metal.
- Inspected platform risers whilst handling 200 kilos of sensor equipment.
Important for Andrew Ford is the Leopard’s ability to maintain a stable work platform whilst working with heavy tooling in adverse conditions – made possible by its iCON intelligent control architecture and 11 powerful thrusters.
“For a vehicle of its size, I also like the iCON intelligent control architecture that allows even more interchangeable tooling and survey sensors to be installed,” said Andrew Ford.