Winner of this years’ annual Underwater Technology Foundation’s UTC Subsea Award for outstanding achievements within the subsea industry, is Saab Seaeye.
They achieved a world first by proving the potential for marine autonomous systems to take a greater role in underwater inspection, repair and maintenance methodologies.
Using its 3000m-rated Sabertooth autonomous underwater vehicle, Saab Seaeye created a field resident system for offshore oil and gas fields in a programme that took 10 years of development.
The 2019 award was presented to representatives of the Swedish team at Saab Seaeye, Jan Siesjö, Chief Engineer, and Peter Erkers, Sales Director, at the Underwater Technology Conference (UTC) in Bergen.
“It has been a long journey,” said Siesjö. “Ten years ago, no one was listening and the market was not mature enough. One of the biggest drivers has been ENI, who have been pursuing technologies with autonomous behaviour characteristics around subsea infrastructure on the seafloor with wireless communication.”
Saab Seaeye is working with Ocean Power Technologies to jointly develop and market solutions for AUV and ROV charging and communications systems, using a buoy-based wave energy generator for power and communications.
The Sabertooth is also being used by ENI to trial a wave power buoy and demonstrate the ability to charge subsea vehicles.
Later this year, a Sabertooth, adapted by Modus Seabed Intervention, based in England, will also be demonstrated as a resident vehicle on a UK offshore wind farm.
This is the fifth UTC Subsea Award. The Underwater Technology Foundation is an independent entity aspiring to provide more insight into the subsea industry in our region. The UTF is the driving force behind the Underwater Technology Conference, with partners GCE Subsea and SPE Bergen Section.