DNV GL, a global classification society headquartered in Norway, has carried out its first offshore drone survey.
The operation took place on the semi-submersible vessel Safe Scandinavia in the North Sea. The tender support vessel (TSV), weighing 25,383 metric gigatons, is owned and operated by Prosafe, supporting Statoil’s drilling operations off the coast of Norway.
Using camera-equipped unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), DNV GL’s drone pilots checked the TSV’s fairleads and their connection with the vessel’s two columns.
“Normally, this kind of operation would cause disruption to our client for several days. The drone survey took only a few hours and was just as effective,” notes Ian Young, chief operating officer at Prosafe.
DNV GL says it has built a network of trained UAS pilots based across the globe, including at its Houston hub.
“This was a great opportunity for us to demonstrate our drones’ abilities to check the condition of remote external components in challenging offshore conditions,” says Cezary Galinski, project manager of classification for Poland at DNV GL. “The inspection only required the semi-submersible to de-ballast; then we flew the drone approximately 25 meters below the main deck to check the condition of the fairleads and their connections to the columns that hold up the TSV. With wind speeds of approximately 15 knots, this went very well, and the survey showed that the fairleads and their connections were in a good condition.”