Fugro Upgrades DeepWorks ROV Tooling Simulation

Monday, April 08, 2013
Close up of hot-stab tool simulation

Fugro Subsea Services is rolling out enhanced tooling capabilities on its DeepWorks simulators. Improvements have been made to ROV manipulator deployed tools to provide easier access verification as well as more realistic deployment behaviours.

DeepWorks 2013 introduces a novel approach to simplify accessibility studies. As well as supporting the traditional approach using a Schilling T4 master arm, a new method has been introduced in DeepWorks Engineer to enable engineers who do not have specific ROV piloting skills or access to a master arm controller to precisely control manipulator tools. The tool tip is driven manually from a suitable input device such as a space navigator/3D mouse (as shown below) or automatically from a pre-defined set of instructions in a file. Manipulator joint positions follow the tool and are adjusted automatically. This engineering solution supports full collision detection and with user-configurable receptacle tolerances can be used for position feedback and to verify successful tool deployment.

Ian Murray, Fugro Subsea Services Engineer Manager, said, “We have found this enhancement particularly useful for validating accessibility of ROV panels on new manifolds and templates. No longer do we need to rely on piloting expertise or manipulator control skills to offer up tools to the interface; studies can now be performed by our Engineering and CAD teams and we can pass on the benefits of faster studies to consider more cases or to complete studies more economically.”

Similar improvements have also been made on the DeepWorks ROV pilot simulator using powered tooling components. Using the master arm controller, pilots can lift tools out of a holster and deploy them into receptacles with realistic collision and dynamic response. Tolerances of receptacles can be changed to cater for the skill level and experience of trainees. Torque tool can turn a valve to its open or closed position and this can activate linear actuators or hydraulic rams.

Jason Tisdall, Fugro Robotic Technologies Business Line Manager said, “Tooling design and operation is an essential part of installation and maintenance support. Stab tools are used routinely to connect and disconnect hydraulic circuits underwater. Torque tools are used to open and close valves on subsea production systems. These tools need to be offered up to and inserted into the ROV interface panel in a very specific way. DeepWorks can be used to help ensure panel receptacles are accessible and ROV-friendly and correct alignment and rotation can be achieved. With DeepWorks, different panel designs can be evaluated quickly and pilots can be trained on a simulator that mirrors the real experience offshore.”

These enhanced tooling capabilities are available with new orders for DeepWorks and as an upgrade to existing installations.


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