SAN DONATO MILANESE, Italy — Saipem and Oil Spill Response Ltd. (OSRL) have extended their services agreement to include FlatFish, Saipem’s underwater drone for environmental monitoring and asset integrity inspection.
Previously the arrangement provided for the storage, maintenance, training of personnel and readiness, including the Offset Installation Equipment (OIE) system.
This is designed to intervene in the event of a subsea well spill in shallow water (up to 600 m depth) when direct vertical access to the well is not possible.
Saipem subsidiary Sonsub developed FlatFish for offshore tasks ranging from surveying, leakage detection, through water column plume and dispersant concentration monitoring to environmental assessment and patrolling.
OSRL’s focus is said to be on continuous improvement through adopting third party-provided solutions that broaden its existing response toolbox. OSRL Subsea subscribers can now access drone-related capabilities for environmental monitoring.
In addition, the agreement allows Saipem to enlarge the fields of application of FlatFish, as it seeks to commercialize the technology on a global scale.
Saipem’s Hydrone development comprises a series of subsea drones capable of fully automatic inspection, surveillance, maintenance and rescue operations.
FlatFish can autonomously perform inspections of subsea assets via technologies such as AI and advanced navigation functions. The vehicle’s hydrodynamic shape and electric propulsion allow it FlatFish to travel long distances in deep water.