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VIDEO: Oceaneering takes on 800-tonne reel drive system

Written by  OE Staff Friday, 13 October 2017 04:01

Oceaneering International has taken delivery of an 800-tonne SWL (safe working load) reel drive system (RDS) from northeast Scotland-based Maritime Developments (MDL).

The modular system will be used to deploy and retrieve subsea umbilical, risers and flowlines on board the company’s new-build multi-service vessel, Ocean Evolution and joins Oceaneering’s global fleet of flex-lay equipment.

Rated for over 1300-tonne DWL (dynamic working load), the RDS is rated for handling 14m-diameter reels weighing 800-tonne under dynamic, sea-state conditions.

The RDS, which can be configured to operate smaller and lighter loads for specific projects, can handle multiple reels, as well as skid fully loaded reels up and down a dedicated track system with integrated reel cradle and support grillage. 

It comes with completely self-contained electric variable frequency drive package and an A60- rated fire-proof control cabin to conform with US coast guard requirements, as well as a Walk-About-Box for complete flexibility of operator position.

This latest third-generation unit is the biggest delivered by MDL to date, and takes the flex-lay equipment provider’s tally of fully-electrical deck systems across the 50th mark. The original third-generation 350-tonne unit, forming part of MDL Offshore Service, was first used as part of a complete MDL flex-lay spread on North Sea’s Kraken field in autumn 2015.

Conrad Picou, Global Supply Manager at Oceaneering, said: “The addition of this RDS will strengthen our offering to operators worldwide. It will complement our existing equipment and deliver more efficient handling and reduced mobilization time to provide far-reaching cost-savings to our clients.”

Derek Smith, MDL CEO, said: “After the success of our 350-tonne third-generation RDS, which demonstrated the time savings achievable with smart equipment design, we were keen to provide the same returns on our larger-scale equipment.

“This system is the result of continual discussions with our clients to understand what can save time - and therefore project cost - and to come up with the best solution for their business needs."

The design features of this latest generation of MDL systems that have delivered time savings on offshore missions include: 

  • complete remote operation, reducing manual handling and eliminating working at heights 
  • integration of the electro-hydraulic power unit within the base of the tower, reducing the ootprint occupied by equipment on deck, allowing for more product or ancillary equipment to be carried on board - potentially reducing sea fastening time and also mission time
  • integration of reel cradle grillage into the RDS track system reel mobilization time without compromising on safety and possibly eliminating under deck stiffening on many vessels

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