Hydromea successfully trialed EXRAY, its wireless underwater ROV system, within a full ballast water tank on one of TotalEnergies’ North Sea floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessels during November 2021. EXRAY was deployed to collect visual inspection data, validating system performance including wireless navigation and wireless communication.
The pilot was able to command and control the vehicle and receive real-time 1080p video feedback, using proprietary wireless optical communication technology that replaces a cabled connection. Without a tether attached, the risk of entanglement in complex confined spaces is greatly reduced.
This project is funded by the Net Zero Technology Centre based in Aberdeen, Scotland and is part of a larger development roadmap focused on enabling portable and affordable multi-robot inspections of the increasing number of submerged assets in the North Sea.
Stephen Ashley, Head of Offshore Energy 4.0 at the Net Zero Technology Centre said: ‘The development of remotely controlled operations empowered by robotics and autonomous systems is key to drive the net zero goals of the energy industry. Hydromea, a graduate of our TechX programme, has developed a game-changing technology that will play a pivotal role in accelerating our transition to an affordable net zero energy industry. This successful pilot trail has proven the EXRAY technology in a real environment and we look forward to supporting Hydromea through the final validation pilot later this year.’
Alexander Bahr, co-founder and COO of Hydromea, added: “Thanks to Net Zero Technology Centre and TotalEnergies, we were able to test our system in the real environment of an offshore site. This is a valuable experience for our development team and it gave us plenty of data points to work with and prepare to our summer validation pilot of the beta system. We are currently looking for the industry partners to work with us in our next funded phase of the roadmap that shall kick-off at the end of 2022.”
Founded in 2014, Hydromea is a Swiss-based underwater robotics company helping its customers to have an unparalleled underwater data connectivity and efficient remote inspection access to submerged assets. The portable autonomous underwater drone platform with its array of unique technologies developed in-house, brings a paradigm shift in how submerged assets are inspected and monitored, enabling the sustainable growth of the ocean economy.
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