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Products: SMD introduce a new ultra compact Work Class ROV

Posted on 30.09.2009 - 13:00 UTC in ROV NEWS by Rons_ROV_Links

SMD introduce a new ultra compact Work Class ROVSMD are pleased to announce a new addition to their Work Class ROV family which combines very compact size with a powerful punch! The aptly named "ATOM" is SMD's new entry level WROV that supersedes the successful Quark and Quasar Compact and sits below the medium sized Quasar and flagship Quantum in SMD's Work Class vehicle range.


ATOM's design brief was to create a light weight, cost effective Work Class ROV system in a package that minimises the consumption of deck space. The ATOM provides an easy to operate system that retains the power and robustness of a hydraulic vehicle but is of comparable size and weight to a large electric ROV. The system provides the ideal solution to the cost-conscious who require Work Class power and capability but have limited available deck space.

At the heart of ATOM is a compact 60hp or 100hp Curvetech hydraulic power pack that can feed hydraulic energy to both propulsion and tooling circuits. This fully hydraulic system negates the complexity of two independent propulsion and tooling technologies demanded by an equivalent sized electric ROV. This simpler approach increases reliability and endows the hydraulic ATOM with considerably more thrust for tackling high current operations coupled with the option to divert all the hydraulic power to tooling. ATOM can provide 500kgf of horizontal thrust; at least 50% more than an equivalent sized electric ROV. The operating window and in-current performance of ATOM cannot be matched by any ROV of similar size currently on the market.

Although ATOM is a lightweight vehicle, it still carries the Q-series family genes of toughness and rigidity to ensure it forms a good stable platform for survey and full size manipulator work. The lightweight frame uses construction techniques from the aerospace industry and employs a compact but rigid central lift core. Resilient quick release polypropylene crash frames are used to protect the extremities from impact with subsea structures or vessel side. The use of compact components has enabled SMD to keep the areas at the front and sides of the ROV clear for maintenance access and the mounting of third party instruments and tools.

The DVECS Light control system used on ATOM includes the same features found on SMD's construction class systems. The ergonomic control console combines user friendliness with pilot aids and graphical diagnostics to improve productivity and reliability. The operators sit in front of a low profile flat panel video wall displaying video images and vehicle status information with commands input via joystick and touch screen control pads on the pilot's desk.

ATOMThe vehicle uses high density electronics to ensure components are as small as possible. This approach has all but eliminated the need for a control pod. Twin multiplexers - each capable of controlling all vehicle functions independently - offer redundancy and an exceptional number of spare instrument channels. The multiplexers act as network hubs for processing carried out at the surface with each subsea component acting as a separately addressable network node. This in turn allows components to assess their operational status and flag any faults that may occur.

ATOM is available with the new Ultra Compact Tophat TMS (UCTMS). This unit offers a 250m tether capacity and uses the same proven fleeting drum principle as the larger Tophat TMS units deployed on Quantum and Quasar. In line with all SMD systems, common components are used where possible to ease spare part holding and retain operator familiarity.

ATOM is available with either the Ultra Compact Crane Launcher or Ultra Compact A-Frame, both with associated lift winch. The crane launcher and winch package is suitable for Sea State 3 operation and fits within a 20ft ISO container footprint. The A-Frame launcher is suitable for up to Sea State 6 operation and still offers a compact solution, fitting within 30ft ISO container footprint.

SMD is one of the world's leading subsea engineering companies designing and manufacturing ROVs, trenching systems, Curvetech components and special projects. SMD have a worldwide customer base operating in markets in oil and gas, telecoms, mining, salvage, military and scientific research.

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