DNV expects shortly to issue the first ISDS (Integrated Software Dependent Systems) class certificate to Dolphin Drilling. This new state-of-the art class notation has been under development since 2008 and the class society says it is already in demand. Several major rig owners are now requesting the ISDS notation on newbuilds, and DNV is working to prepare yards and suppliers worldwide to deliver to the ISDS requirements.
‘With the diagnostics and remote access that is being built into our rigs now, it is really important that software integrity is flawless,' says Ivar Brandvold, chief executive of Fred Olsen Energy. ‘This DNV initiative is very welcome.'
Rolf Benjamin Johansen, the director of operations at software integration for DNV maritime & energy, explains: ‘Our analysis indicates that applying the ISDS class notation can easily save $6-20 million by avoiding the delays caused by the need to rework software. In fact, this range is conservative as it does not include avoided costs. Being on schedule avoids propagating supply-chain costs.'
According to Johansen, the ISDS notation focuses on how to set up and run a project and how to develop quality assurance processes that will last throughout the vessel's lifetime. ‘The class notation alone is not a silver bullet that will solve all software-related problems on drilling units, but it is an important part of the solution. This notation provides a well-defined industry framework for systematically assuring the quality and performance of software-dependent systems,' he says.
DNV's work on integrated software-dependent systems goes back to 1982 when the first classification note on computer-based systems was launched. During the past few years, it performed more than 15 successful ISDS projects in the offshore and maritime industries. OE
Badger set fair: Hailed as a groundbreaking ‘fly by wire' exploration tool, the Badger Explorer developed out of early work undertaken at IRIS , the International Research Institute of Stavanger (formerly Rogaland Research). Badger Explorer ASA was founded in 2003 to commercialize the technology.
The tool is in principle a drilling bottom hole assembly, fitted with a full suite of logging tools, which drills itself into the ground while at the same time plugging the hole behind. The tool is powered from surface via a cable, which is stored inside the tool and spooled out as it moves downwards. Logging data is transmitted to the surface through the same cable. The Badger Explorer has very low power consumption and is not expected to have any negative impact on the environment.
Financed largely by Badger Explorer ASA , but also supported by the Research Council of Norway, Shell, ExxonMobil and Statoil, a prototype project aimed at demonstrating the tool's patented technology, started in 2005 and is expected to be completed this spring.
A video of the demonstration which took place at a test site in Brumunddal in Norway late last year is posted at www.bxpl.com