Drone station at offshore platforms

As offshore oil and gas platforms age, they require increased oversight.[1] Inspections of the platforms by drones have demonstrated to be cheaper and more efficient than conventional inspections.[2,3] Drones can access hard-to-reach areas, and have reduced the inspection time of an oil platform from 8 weeks to 5 days while allowing operations to continue.[2,4]

Drones, stationed at offshore platforms, could conduct continuous inspections autonomously, reducing the trips that inspectors need to take to the platform. This would furthermore enable the effective monitoring of structures - not merely their inspection - that is needed for predictive maintenance solutions. Monitoring structures has shown to be able to improve uptime by allowing for the better scheduling and allocation of maintenance crews.[5]

When will aerial drone stations be installed on oil and gas platforms?

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[1]McKinsey, 2014, Meeting the challenge of increasing North Sea costs
[2]Weichenhain, 2019, Drones: The Future of Asset Inspection
[3]The Explorer, 2020 , Stabilised drone platforms for offshore renewable energy production
[4]Venables, M., 2018, Drones Begin To Deliver On Their Potential For The Oil And Gas Sector
[5]Simonsen, R., 2020, Drone inspection of oil and gas constructions


By Matthew J. Spaniol