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Kongsberg Ferrotech is researching underwater 3D printing

For in-situ repair of subsea components

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Kongsberg Ferrotech has finalized the development of a revolutionary “Subsea Additive Manufacturing for Lifetime Extension” technology. This underwater 3D printing research and development project will be performed with SINTEF and other major industry players and supported by the Research Council of Norway.

The project will allow for in-situ repairs of subsea components like flowlines and conductors, by use of additive manufacturing techniques – significantly extending the lifetime of the assets. Lifetime extension is of high importance for sustainable development and optimal utilization of resources, both in Norway and globally. The successful development and implementation of the project will represent a game-changer for the maintenance and repair of subsea components.

For Kongsberg Ferrotech, this development represents another significant step towards “taking the workshop to the damaged pipe” – whether it is a conductor pipe in the splash-zone or a pipeline resting on the seabed – and will unlock a world of opportunities in the global markets.

The Norwegian company is a specialist in underwater robotics. Its Oktapous, Nautilus and Exoskeleton are autonomous robots for inspection, repair and maintenance (IRM) of subsea assets. These robots can perform maintenance of subsea equipment in one single operation and without divers, and other conventional equipment. They represent a game-changing technology that can revolutionize how service operations are conducted in the future and underwater 3D printing is a natural evolution of their capabilities.

The robots and the technology behind them will, for the first time, introduce robotics as a complete solution for service operations. By introducing robotics to inspection, repair and maintenance of subsea assets; repairs can be carried out with minimum HSE requirements, costs can be reduced drastically, weather conditions no longer represent a challenging obstacle and repair procedures can be performed immediately after inspection. The robots can operate without any production shut-down.

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