Utility ROV launches decommissioning tool

Offshore staff

GLENROTHES, UK Utility ROV Services (URS) has announced the launch of a new mattress recovery tool (MRT) developed for the decommissioning market.

The tool has been designed to recover concrete mattresses that have been installed to protect subsea piping. URS started developing the tool in response to challenges identified by Decom North Sea around the safe and efficient recovery of some 40,000 concrete mattresses in use throughout the North Sea.  

The MRT will be deployed from the company’s UTROV system, a remotely operated tool carrier which is suspended from a surface vessel via a load bearing umbilical. The enabling technology is equipped with thrusters to control its orientation and assist with positioning during operations.

Operator feedback is provided through the cameras and lights mounted on the UTROV along with various sensors that monitor the status and health of the system. Once mobilized, the UTROV can be furnished with a number of specially designed tools to carry out subsea cutting, dredging, and handling operations.

The addition of the MRT to the company’s technology portfolio comes just a few months after URS announced a £6-million ($7.4-million) investment in new equipment for the oil and gas industry.

URS Managing Director, Patrick Crawford said that a full package of options will soon be available to operators for use.

“We looked at the challenges facing the sector and considered how our existing systems could be enhanced to address these challenges and add real value to the decommissioning sector,” Crawford said. He also pointed to the Oil & Gas UK’s recent Decommissioning Insight 2016 report, which he said suggested that the market was an emerging one.

The forecast says that £17.6 billion ($21.8 billion) is projected to be spent on decommissioning in the UK continental shelf over 2016-2025.

The company completed a series of equipment trials at the Subsea Protection Systems facility in Dundee and expects the tool to be deployed on the first decommissioning project early next year.


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