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September 20, 2022

Equinor Awards Modus 'World's First' Resident Subsea Drone Contract

Credit: Modus/social media

Credit: Modus/social media

Modus, a company specializing in hovering autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs), has won a contract with Equinor for the provision of underwater intervention drone missions at their Johan Sverdrup field.

The contract, which will run from 2023 to mid-2024, is for underwater intervention drone operations at the offshore field located in the Norwegian part of the North Sea, and will see one of Modus’ Saab Sabertooth HAUVs resident in field "for a significant period. "

According to Modus, this is the world’s first resident subsea drone contract by Equinor Energy.

The offshore operations will involve in-field autonomous surveys and light interventions with over-the-horizon control from Modus’ Command and Control Centre at its head office in Darlington, UK.

"Residency, where the vehicle remains docked with a subsea docking station for charging and data transfer, will provide carbon-zero survey and IMR solutions that will improve sustainability, efficiency, safety and decision-making in the sector," Modus said.

Ash Sheppard, Modus’ Chief Strategy Officer said: “This is a significant and exciting contract award for Modus, and I am proud of what was a real team effort throughout this process. 

"In recent months, we have been transforming our business to focus exclusively on the next generation of subsea survey, and IMR solutions and this project has been a key strategic target for us. Equinor is leading the way on tech solutions as part of its commitment to a low-carbon future, and this contract has the potential to drive a paradigm shift in the industry.”

Nick Tompkins, Modus CEO, said: “This project will further demonstrate the major benefits of resident UIDs and we are excited to work with Equinor to provide a sustainable route to vastly improved operational regularity, consistent ultra-high quality data, significantly reduced OPEX spend and increased safety.”


Subsea vehicles are the workhorses of subsea exploration, and in this edition MTR explores the technologies and technique that are helping to deliver increased presence and improved quality and speed of data delivery from the world’s waterways.
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