Celebrating Robotic Technology and Roving Bats


Editorial direction by Brian Huse, Director, Marketing & PR, Robotic Industries Association

The Oil & Gas Expo and Conference celebrates technology with 1,200 exhibits and 39,000 visitors in Rio de Janeiro this fall. On display will be a robotic vessel called Roving Bat, a submersible hybrid of sorts for underwater inspection, security and telepresence.

ROV for underwater inspection and telepresenceAccording to the corporate forces behind Roving Bat (namely ECA and CSIP), this robotic tool “is a time-saving, cost efficient and life saving system that inspects the hulls of ships, FPSOs, underwater structures and hydraulic dams. It is also used for security applications, to search and dispose of limpet mines and other explosive, suspect devices attached on ships hulls, harbor walls or piers.”

How quickly robots have become at home on land, at sea and in space. But their success is not accidental. Brilliant minds conceived and built robotic systems to exacting standards. Demanding customers and conditions forced robotic systems to be tough, durable and reliable.

Precision is of course built-in with robots. Ask any automaker. Or surgeon. Or pilot. Better yet, see for yourself by mixing with these brilliant people at industry events. Can’t make it to Rio for the Roving Bat? Chicago has Automate 2011 – formerly the International Robots & Vision Show – from March 21-24. You’ll see the best there, too.

Now, back to our story about the Roving Bat.

The Roving Bat features six built-in thrusters, two longitudinal and four vertical, making it very powerful and capable of withstanding the strongest of currents for stable and reliable inspection. The ROV reaches its target in free-flying mode and sticks to any vertical or inclined surface. It can then move along this surface in crawling mode for close inspection achieving coverage of up to 20 meters per minute.

Since launching the Roving Bat last year and exhibiting it at a number of exhibitions worldwide, the ROV has caught the attention of the defense and civil security community. Managing Director of CSIP, Simon Gilligan said: “The first company to purchase the Roving Bat was Brazilian oil and gas giant, Petrobras, to discover whether there may be corrosion or lesions on the hull of Floating Production, Storage and Offloading vessels. The Roving Bat has since been upgraded and the new high performance vehicle has recently been released. We are receiving a great number of enquiries from interested parties.

“Rio Oil and Gas is a great opportunity to introduce the Roving Bat to an even wider audience and with CSIP’s experts available to talk through the benefits of the Roving Bat, I am sure it will gain great interest at the exhibition.”

Robotic arm for ROVsCSIP will also exhibit the latest generation of the 5 Function Electric Underwater Manipulator Arm, ARM 5 E, featuring new software for 2010. The electric five-function arm performs to the same level as a hydraulic arm, but offers a number of advantages, which include the removal of a pump and valve pack, reducing the weight of the arm. Another main benefit is the improved safety of an electronic arm as it removes the possibility of hydraulic fluid leaking out. The electric motors are brushless and will operate in oil, all the actuator and junction box voids are therefore oil-filled and pressure compensated to 0.4 Bar above ambient, with 7500 meter rated seals.

A keynote of the design is its modularity, allowing new applications to be added easily. Rated for use at depths down to 3,000 meters, the new electric arm has a radius of 1.044m reach and a slew of 120° and is constructed of HE30 hard anodized aluminum, 316 stainless steel and nickel aluminum bronze.

ARM 7 H, a seven-function hydraulic manipulator arm will also be exhibited and has recently been re-designed to enable additional lift power and controllability. Withstanding depths of 7,500 meters, a much deeper rating then any other standard manipulator, and with its flexibility die to the precise pincer device and rotation, the re-engineered ARM 7 H offers its user the precision needed to undertake a number of tasks.

Both the ARM 5 E and ARM 7 H will be in working order at the exhibition, allowing visitors to see the arm’s ability and precision.

With the ability to design and manufacture machines that are specific to the needs of its clients, CSIP’s experts will be available to discuss bespoke requirements, visit ECA and CSIP at Rio Oil and Gas Expo and Conference.

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2 Responses to Celebrating Robotic Technology and Roving Bats

  1. Brian Huse says:

    More news on the Roving Bat…

    CSIP’s Roving Bat Makes a Name for itself on German TV

    The Roving Bat, a hybrid free-flying ROV and crawler designed and made by CSIP, a UK based company specialising in the design, development and manufacturing of remote controlled robotic systems for hostile environments, was the star of a documentary recently aired in Germany.

    ZDF Umwelt magazin, a German television programme focusing on environmental topics, chose to feature the Roving Bat in a documentary about how offshore activity requires high-tech equipment to function effectively.

    The Roving Bat, equipped with a hydrocarbon leak detection system, was used in the documentary and underwater cameras gave viewers a clear view of the ROV in action.

    Simon Gilligan, Managing Director of CSIP said: “When ZDF Umwelt magazin approached us to use the Roving Bat in the documentary, we were only too pleased to demonstrate the ROV’s impressive capabilities.

    “The Roving Bat was originally designed to survey the hulls of ships, underwater structures and hydraulic dams for any signs of damage. It can also be used for the search and disposal of limpet mines and other explosive and suspect devices attached on ships hulls, harbour walls or piers, making it one of the most popular vehicles in our fleet.

    “The Roving Bat has 6 built-in thrusters, 2 longitudinal and 4 vertical, making it very powerful and capable of withstanding heavy currents for stable and reliable inspection. Its body has been designed to minimise drag, reaching its target in free-flying mode and sticks to any vertical or inclined surface. It can then move along this surface in crawling mode for close inspection and can achieve coverage of up to 20 metres per minute. With a thrust of 80 kg when travelling in a vertical direction and 48 kg in a horizontal direction it allows the vehicles to operate in extreme conditions.

    “Because of these capabilities, it was the perfect example to use in the documentary and since the documentary aired we have received several enquiries from researchers in Germany interested in the Roving Bat.”

  2. Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though you relied on the video
    to make your point. You definitely know what youre talking about, why waste your intelligence on just posting videos to your blog when you could
    be giving us something informative to read?

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