PTTEP backs subsea robotics development

May 28, 2019

Offshore staff

BANGKOK, ThailandPTTEP plans to invest around 1.6 billion baht ($50 million) during 2019-21 in the AI and Robotics Ventures Co. (ARV), a subsidiary of EP-Tech Ventures Holding Co.

“ARV’s long-term goal is to become an integrated platform for continuous development in cutting-edge AI and robotics,” said general manager Dr. Thana Slanvetpan.

One of its technologies, developed with a Norwegian partner, is a remotely-operated subsea flowline control and repair robot capable of performing inspection, repair and maintenance tasks. According to PTTEP, the development could halve typical subsea pipeline repairs, as the robot can be deployed quickly, also minimizing exposure to hazards associated with manned underwater operations.

Other ARV projects are an inspection-class autonomous underwater vehicle for preventive inspection of facilities such as subsea pipelines and below-surface platform structures without the need for a support vessel or a large supporting crew; an In-pipe Inspection Robot for examining the inside of petroleum pipelines and providing a 3D visual profile for improved predictive maintenance; and an unmanned aerial vehicle for inspecting facilities at height.

“AI and Robotic technologies help business overcome conventional restrictions and bring about new advantages including reduction in operation time and cost, increase in precision and agility due to their ability to process, analyze and make decision…creativity in software design also makes possible diverse applications. The potential is therefore infinite,” Thana said.