Marine Technology Reporter Blogs - deepwater

Future ROV Technology - Subsea Wireless Control

August 11, 2014

rov Operations x
Wireless subsea technology is becoming a fundamental part of the oil and gas industry worldwide. Back in 2010, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) scientists and engineers announced testing of an undersea optical communications system that, complemented by acoustics, enabled a virtual revolution in high-speed undersea data collection and transmission. Acoustic techniques were developed, which are now the predominant mode of underwater communications between ships and smaller, autonomous and remote control vehicles. However, acoustic systems, although capable of long-range communication, transmit data at limited speeds and delayed delivery rates due to the relatively slow speed of sound in water.

Hadal Ecosystem Expedition Takes Off

April 24, 2014

hades website
An international team of researchers is using the unique deepwater Hybrid ROV Nereus, and other advanced technology to explore life in the depths of the Kermadec Trench, which runs northeast from the North Island of New Zealand. The 40-day expedition, which began on April 12th, kicks off an ambitious three-year collaborative effort funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The goal of the project, known as Hadal Ecosystem Studies (HADES), is to conduct the first-ever systematic study of life in ocean trenches, comparing it to the neighboring abyssal plain at depths between 3,000 and 6,000 meters. Due to the extreme pressures of these deep-sea environments and the technical challenges involved in reaching them…

Brazil Coastal Monitoring

April 21, 2014

obs system
Bounded by the Atlantic Ocean on the east, Brazil has a coast that is 7,491 km (4,655 mi) long. Offshore, numerous islands and archipelagos form part of Brazilian territory, such as Fernando de Noronha, Rocas Atoll, Abrolhos, Saint Peter and Paul Rocks, and Trindade and Martim Vaz Islands. Yet Brazil has no Coast Guard, the coast being patrolled by the Brazilian Navy, which does not have a mandate to make arrests, but which does keep in check illegal fishing. Costal policing would theoretically be done by the Federal Police. However, the reality is that they do not have anything near enough assets to patrol such a large coast. In terms of environmental monitoring…

Future Offshore Ocean Observatories - Part 1

March 8, 2014

fig WHOIMVCOdiagr Doucette
Offshore Ocean Observatories, are composed of suites of surface and subsea instruments and sensors with long-term power supplies and permanent communications links that can feed data to scientific laboratories in real-time. Motivated by advances in computing, telecom, marine architecture and subsea sensor technology, researchers observe the oceans in real-time, for long periods of time, and sky around all the way to deepwater, including imaging and continuous sensor observation along the whole water column to the sea floor. Ocean observatories are designed to answer questions about how the seas and oceans work, their dynamics and peculiarities.

Future ROV Technology - Subsea Wireless Control

August 11, 2014

Wireless subsea technology is becoming a fundamental part of the oil and gas industry worldwide. Back in 2010, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) scientists and engineers announced testing of an undersea optical communications system that, complemented by acoustics, enabled a virtual revolution in high-speed undersea data collection and transmission. Acoustic techniques were developed, which are now the predominant mode of underwater communications between ships and smaller, autonomous and remote control vehicles. However, acoustic systems, although capable of long-range communication, transmit data at limited speeds and delayed delivery rates due to the relatively slow speed of sound in water.

Riserless Light Well Intervention for Deepwater Wells

February 24, 2014

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Riserless Light Well Intervention (RLWI) enables operators to increase the oil and gas recovery rate from subsea oil wells. It allows rapid well access by using smaller DP vessels instead of larger semisub drilling rigs or drillships. RLWI also enables subsea well intervention without having to use a drilling riser package connected to the subsea stack, which is topped by the blowout preventer system. Riserless intervention is a cost-saving alternative to drilling rigs, reducing mobilization time for life-of-well operations including wireline, logging, light perforating, zone isolation, plug setting and removal, and decommissioning. The technology is based on wireline well maintenance, where the cable is routed via a subsea lubricator system into the subsea well.

Future ROV Technology - Subsea Wireless Control

August 11, 2014

Wireless subsea technology is becoming a fundamental part of the oil and gas industry worldwide. Back in 2010, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) scientists and engineers announced testing of an undersea optical communications system that, complemented by acoustics, enabled a virtual revolution in high-speed undersea data collection and transmission. Acoustic techniques were developed, which are now the predominant mode of underwater communications between ships and smaller, autonomous and remote control vehicles. However, acoustic systems, although capable of long-range communication, transmit data at limited speeds and delayed delivery rates due to the relatively slow speed of sound in water.

Future ROV Technology - Subsea Wireless Control

August 11, 2014

Wireless subsea technology is becoming a fundamental part of the oil and gas industry worldwide. Back in 2010, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) scientists and engineers announced testing of an undersea optical communications system that, complemented by acoustics, enabled a virtual revolution in high-speed undersea data collection and transmission. Acoustic techniques were developed, which are now the predominant mode of underwater communications between ships and smaller, autonomous and remote control vehicles. However, acoustic systems, although capable of long-range communication, transmit data at limited speeds and delayed delivery rates due to the relatively slow speed of sound in water.

Future ROV Technology - Subsea Wireless Control

August 11, 2014

Wireless subsea technology is becoming a fundamental part of the oil and gas industry worldwide. Back in 2010, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) scientists and engineers announced testing of an undersea optical communications system that, complemented by acoustics, enabled a virtual revolution in high-speed undersea data collection and transmission. Acoustic techniques were developed, which are now the predominant mode of underwater communications between ships and smaller, autonomous and remote control vehicles. However, acoustic systems, although capable of long-range communication, transmit data at limited speeds and delayed delivery rates due to the relatively slow speed of sound in water.

Future ROV Technology - Subsea Wireless Control

August 11, 2014

Wireless subsea technology is becoming a fundamental part of the oil and gas industry worldwide. Back in 2010, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) scientists and engineers announced testing of an undersea optical communications system that, complemented by acoustics, enabled a virtual revolution in high-speed undersea data collection and transmission. Acoustic techniques were developed, which are now the predominant mode of underwater communications between ships and smaller, autonomous and remote control vehicles. However, acoustic systems, although capable of long-range communication, transmit data at limited speeds and delayed delivery rates due to the relatively slow speed of sound in water.

Future ROV Technology

August 6, 2014

Hibbard Inshore Hybrid AUV ROV
Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) perform a wide range of tasks in a variety of underwater scenarios ranging from research to offshore oil industry support, military operations and S&R. Technological developments, have greatly enhanced their scope of operation including harsh environment operations, such as deepwater and Arctic ops. As oil operations went to deeper waters, so did ROVs, which became a key asset in subsea operations such as pre-salt development and has also been increasingly substituting divers below 300 meters, although saturation diving is very much alive and will also continue to be an important asset. The ROVs of the future will have increased intelligent autonomous behavior and will use logic driven circuitry for routine tasks like turning valves…

Future Trends – Automated Drilling

July 15, 2014

seabed Front Page
Some interesting trends are developing within the O & G industry, one of which is the trend towards increasingly automated drilling. Since the early stages of onshore and offshore drilling, the act of drilling itself has been undertaken as a hands-on job by specialized workers, along the last decade this has begun to change with the introduction of autonomous computer-controlled drilling operations, also known as drilling automation. Oil and Gas operators are developing technologies which they hope will allow drilling operations to be automated, consequently meeting their safety goal of zero people hurt on the job and also reducing drilling operation costs.

Polar Onyx PLSV

June 27, 2014

NB Polar Onyx
The Polar Onyx is arguably the most modern PLSV working offshore Brazil. It is a good example of how Petrobras is demanding high-powered PLSV’s and OSV’s in general to tackle the harsh environments found in Brazil’s deepwater plays. The high capacity new-built is designed for operations in harsh conditions and deep waters and is configured with an Ulstein X-bow. It is built to the highest standard in dynamic positioning, DP3 (Operations +). Final outfitting took place in Schiedam in the Netherlands, where Huisman has installed a 275t vertical lay system (VLS) and a deck-mounted carousel with capacity for 2,000t of flexible pipes. Two permanent work-class ROVs delivered by Ceona’s partner ROVOP, which can operate in 3,000m water depth, were also mobilized in Schiedam.

Deepwater Riser Technology

June 24, 2014

bundled hybrid riser
Un-coupled riser systems are increasingly being used in deepwater and ultra-deepwater field developments, where harsh environments predominate. Hybrid Riser Towers (HRTs) are recognized to have significant benefits for deepwater riser applications in terms of flow assurance, thermal performance and robustness of layout. This latter issue is especially significant when a large number of risers are considered. An HRT provides the required flexibility by avoiding a crowded layout and allowing a progressive deployment. The concept is applicable to deepwater and ultra-deepwater, and to spread-moored and turret-moored FPSO installations. The Single Hybrid Risers (SHR) in its Single or Pipe-in-Pipe versions…

Ativatec ROV Tools

June 12, 2014

CRAB TOOL
Ativatec is a Brazilian company specialized in subsea technology and robotics engineering. The company was born at the Genesis Incubator at the Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio) in 2005. Today, Ativatec offers subsea services for Petrobras at the Campos Basin. Ativatec has a very good track record in developing new subsea technologies in partnership with government research institutes and universities such as FINEP, FAPERJ, PUC-Rio and Petrobras. Prizes and recognition from Petrobras for the services and products developed for the National Operator along the last 9 years, has earned Ativatec a preferred partner status with Petrobras and the company is recognized as one of the main Brazilian subsea robotic companies in the market.

Advanced Drilling Technology: Mapping-While-Drilling

May 30, 2014

geo Sphere
Oil and Gas drilling teams usually contend with tight schedules for project developments and this may eventually lead to low quality plans and limited risk assessment, which may cause expensive and potentially dangerous drilling problems, such as, stuck pipes, violent kicks, unproductive time and cost overruns. The introduction of Schlumberger’s reservoir mapping-while-drilling service is enabling drillers to make better decisions in short timeframes and avoid costly mistakes. For the operators, the main benefits from the effective well placement may be maximized production, minimized construction and intervention costs. The process of well placements brings together many different disciplines…

Composites X Steel Deepwater Pipes

July 21, 2014

HIW risers
The development of pipes that can withstand high pressure, heat and corrosion in deepwater locations such as offshore Brazil and the GoM and WA is continuous. For many years steel piping dominated the O&G industry but with pre-salt projects beyond 2,000 meters deep and corrosive enhanced oil recovery techniques widely being used in the industry, pipeline manufacturers have been looking for more flexible and robust materials. France's Technip, which is a world leader in pipe manufacture, uses layered steel with a stainless steel or plastic lining for main offshore pipes. However, British engineering company Magma Global and Dutch company Airborne are pioneering composite pipes made from a fusion of high-end fibers and plastics which are up to 90% lighter than steel pipes and do not corrode.

Deepwater Technology for Deep Sea Mining

May 11, 2014

complete overview
The recent agreement reached on deep sea mining by the Canadian mining company Nautilus Minerals and the government of with Papua New Guinea highlights the importance of deepwater technology developed for the O&G industry. The project will extract ores of copper, gold and other valuable metals from a depth of 1,500m. Nautilus Minerals, has been interested in mining the seabed minerals off Papua New Guinea (PNG) since the 1990s but was locked in a lengthy dispute with the PNG government over the terms of the operation. Under the agreement just reached, PNG will take a 15% stake in the mine by contributing $120m towards the costs of the operation.

Cobalt’s Lontra 1 off Angola taps “Global Scale” reserves

January 28, 2014

Mapa Cobalt Angola x
Cobalt International Energy recently said the drill stem test results at its Lontra 1 pre-salt well off Angola were "exceptional, with excellent quality reservoirs that are better than we had expected". This may be the first major pre-salt find in WA that matches some of the huge pre-salt plays uncorked in Brazil. Drilled to a depth of 4,195 meters (13,843 feet) and penetrating some 75 meters of net pay, Cobalt said that, "while further appraisal drilling will be required to determine the ultimate size of the Lontra field, it is clear that Lontra is a discovery on a global scale”. Lontra is a pre-salt prospect off Angola in Block 20.

Carcará - Another Big Pre-salt Play in Brazil

January 23, 2014

Carcara map
The Carcará oilfield off the Brazilian coast is named for a bird of prey that is liberally known as the Brazilian Eagle, its scientic name is: Polyborus Plancus. Carcará located in Block BM-S-8 is believed to hold one of the thickest reservoirs ever discovered in Brazil's Santos Basin pre-salt cluster, with a reservoir thickness of 471 meters. The play is being developed by a consortium composed of Petrobras (66%), Galp Energy (14%), and Brazilian players QGEP and Barra Energia with (10%) each. Tested flow rates and reservoir conditions at the Carcará discovery are superior to the famous Lula field. The Lula field, which is currently producing about 100,000 bopd, is estimated to hold recoverable reserves of between 5 billion and 8 billion boe.