Commercial Diving is the act of sending professional divers underwater to accomplish extremely skilled and sometimes dangerous work. Commercial Divers can be seen offshore, often working for the oil & gas industry, performing underwater inspections, cleaning, repairing and even welding underwater.
Commercial Diving is critical to the construction, inspection and maintenance of our underwater infrastructure, from boats, bridges, oil rigs, pipelines, and dams. Commercial Divers provide the means for manned underwater intervention. But what happens when the situation poses a significant safety risk? Inspection-class Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) can be used for unmanned intervention, performing many of the same tasks as a diver while reducing risk.
While professional divers will never be replaced due to their unique skills, certifications, and human ingenuity, commercial dive companies which utilize ROVs have a leg up on the competition by offering an extended line of services at a lower price point to meet the needs of a larger customer base. Services including:
The first step in understanding a problem underwater is to survey the situation. For this, an inspection class ROV provides a quick way to get a live video feed underwater, operate continuously, and record video and sonar data of the mission for further analysis.
Remotely Operated Vehicles are routinely equipped with a variety of underwater instruments to collect samples and data in real time. ROV attachments include grabber arms, water and sediment samplers, water quality probes, non-destructive metal thickness gauges, sonar, GPS positioning systems, depth and temperature gauges, and a host of other instruments, all designed to collect the right information in
the right place.
Depending on the size of the ROV, advanced instruments and tooling can be added to accomplish heavy tasks, from salvage to repair. Work-class ROVs often include robotic manipulator arms, tool trays, stabilized thrust and large payload capacity. For deep dives, dangerous locations, and extended operation, ROVs can do a variety of tasks safely.
Whenever your underwater mission calls for inspection, especially in challenging conditions, consider using an ROV to complete the task or to aid divers with preliminary inspection to keep them safe.