‘Remotely Operated Vehicle’ (ROV) is a generic name given to any vehicle that is remotely operated on land, in the air or in water and this article concentrates on ‘in-water’ vehicles.
ROV’s number in the thousands, support a wide customer base, and are firmly established geographically in a range of market sectors including onshore civil work, oil and gas, alternative energy, oceanographic research, salvage and the military. Originally designed for military use in the 1970s, ROV’s quickly moved into other sectors as the technology and its capability were able to fulfil the requirements of customers, providing the overall flexibility to undertake varying work tasks without attendant risk of placing a person in the water. They are the choice of many operators, particularly in water depths beyond the practical limit for saturation diving. The use of ROV’s is, however, unlikely to replace divers in many of the shallow water work scopes where the tactile feel, spatial awareness and adaptability of the diver, particularly in low subsurface visibility conditions, maintains an advantage over remote technology, which lacks at this time some of these primary perceptions.
Read the complete article here.