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Challenges In The Deep: The Role Of Manned Submersibles In An Autonomous Age

By: Rhonda Moniz And Kira Coley

The world’s oceans are hectic with advanced underwater technology striving to uncover its longretained secrets. Yet, 60 years ago Denise was the only one of her kind. Developed by JacquesYves Cousteau and engineer Jean Mollard in 1959 at the French Centre for Undersea Research, Denise, or SP350, was the first manned underwater vehicle designed expressly for scientific exploration. In 1965, the advancement of technology allowed Denise, along with Cousteau's team on board Calypso, to explore depths down to 500 m and complete over 1,500 dives. Six decades later, some question if there is still a place for manned underwater systems in scientific exploration and what the future holds for this technology.

Manned Underwater Vehicles: Pushing The Next Frontier

By: Will Kohnen And Colleen Hahn

The design, manufacture, and operation of human-occupied vessels to meet the challenges of extreme ocean environments is led by the Marine Technology Society’s elite Manned Underwater Vehicles (MUV) group. Across several decades, advancements by these companies have impacted space, defense, airborne and other subsea initiatives. New engineering designs leverage the physics of underwater propulsion, new material fabrication (i.e., titanium and carbon fiber), and energy storage, and there have been advances in optical cameras for subsea filming and data capture as well as underwater navigation systems. In 2016, the companies below had significant success in MUV exploration, engineering, design, and technological innovations.

Diving Deeper in OceanGate’s Cyclops Submersibles

By: Rhonda Moniz

With close ties to the aerospace and technology industries, Stockton Rush and Guillermo Sohnlein founded OceanGate, Inc. in Everett, Washington in 2009. OceanGate provides manned submersible solutions that enable researchers to reach the oceans' vast resources. They currently own and operate two five-man submersibles that provide deep-sea access for underwater site survey and inspection, scientific research, technology testing, and film production.

January Product Spotlight - RockSeven

Rockblock – Scaling Down Satcom For Research & Commercial Applications

By enabling a plug-and-play satellite communication link from literally anywhere on the planet, the innovative RockBLOCK system has become the unsung hero of countless marine research and commercial applications. Developed by the UKʼs Rock Seven, the RockBLOCK concept is beautifully simple—provide an open platform to enable data communication in a small and low-cost form factor.

Revolutionary New Technique Demonstrated For FPSO Hull Inspection

The need for and difficulties of external inspections of giant Floating Production, Storage, and Offloading (FPSO) units might not be obvious. The most important aspect of the inspection of the hull and underwater parts of the vessel is that it is—indeed—a vessel. As such, it is required to undergo regulatory inspections as specified by the governing classification society and must have similar inspections on the same schedule as any other oceangoing vessel. However, there are two serious challenges that other vessels do not have to face.

The mission specialist ready for deployment

Wireless Technology - Bringing The Industry Together

By: Ross MacLeod, Business Development Director, Ashtead Technology

Wireless technology has transformed the way we live—yet today, most communications from oil and gas platforms and vessels to shore still depend on expensive satellite links and capturing data from these remote locations is still a major challenge for the industry.

Deep Ocean Oil Rig

Oil And Gas Industry Accelerates Technological Innovations During Downturn

Even as the oil and gas investment cycle reaches its bottom, the strategic imperative to improve productivity through innovation has never been clearer as the industry prepares for a slow, drawn-out recovery. Despite the high-tech nature of oil and gas, historically, energy firms have been hesitant to embrace new technology. Yet as the market recovers in coming years, the industry can expect to see a bifurcation between firms that merely survived the crash versus those that used the crisis as an opportunity to drive productivity throughout their business model. As a result, the energy ecosystem is seeing a thought shift in approaches to adopting new technology as firms challenging their old models will be best positioned during the inevitable rebound. Communication service providers play an important role by assimilating new solutions across the industry to enable the gradual shift to the digital oilfield where connectivity will allow secure real-time collaboration and enable data analytics. The future of oil and gas will be centered on information technology and software. Firms failing to make these investments today will be left behind.

High End Satellite Dish

December Company Spotlight - DeepWater Buoyancy

DeepWater Buoyancy Inc. is the world's largest producer of subsea buoyancy products for the oceanographic industry and has a vast product line of buoyancy solutions for offshore oil & gas, energy and technology companies. This product portfolio has been built over the course of 35 years serving these industries. Though they offer products for shallow water applications, the company specializes in deepwater, providing solutions to depths of 6000 meters and beyond.

Company Spotlight - DeepWater Buoyancy

December Company Spotlight - Balmoral

Balmoral header

A client-focused company, Balmoral Offshore Engineering is dedicated to technologically-driven composite and polymer solutions for today's demanding subsea and deepwater oil and gas industry.


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