Norwegian TSO Gassco to cut down pipe inspection time by employing two robots

Maintenance at Norway’s three main plants, Nyhamna, Kollsnes and Kaarstoe, is conducted annually and the country’s gas output, vital for British and central European customers, is reduced as a result, affecting fuel prices around the continent.

The new robots gather information that Gassco can use to optimize its maintenance plans, while inspection robots can replace time-consuming and costly inspections by humans and significantly cut downtime for certain plant assets.

The pre-work and after-work you need to do to prepare the vessel to be safe and send an inspector in there take time and are costly … Now we have reduced this time by 50-80%,” said Haakon Hilmar Ferkingstad, senior engineer at Gassco.

The new equipment includes Bike, a small magnetic robot that Gassco has started using at Kaarstoe’s and Nyhamna’s pressure vessels, and the snake-like machine, which will inspect pipelines at Nyhamna later this year.

The robots were invented by a European Union co-funded program called Petrobot and adapted for Gassco’s needs by General Electric.

Norway last year piped 114.2 bcm of gas to Europe, the second highest level on record.

 

Source reuters
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