A STATE-OF-THE-ART underwater survey robot being developed by a collaboration of companies from across the UK is on schedule for completion next spring after a successful first demonstration.
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Forth, which has bases at Maryport, Cleator Moor and Barrow, has built a global reputation for working collaboratively to develop world-first technologies, providing cutting edge solutions to complex industrial challenges.
Forth’s Programme Manager, Peter Routledge said: “Underwater robots are increasingly utilised for commercial and scientific applications to make measurements and interact with underwater assets and the environment. The project’s goal is to develop underwater autonomous vehicles that can improve safety and reduce the challenges of operating in hazardous environments.”
The nuclear use case demonstrator showed how the technology can be used for offshore coring, and wet nuclear storage pond surveys and interactions.
Forth has incorporated sonar technology with the robot’s system to detect and avoid obstacles underwater to enable the robots to be used near ‘critical infrastructure’. Alongside this Forth has developed an Enabling Technology which provides Launch and Recovery, recharging and high bandwidth communications for the ROV.
Forth’s other recent projects include working to develop a world-first Friction Stir Welding Robotic Crawler (FSWbot) for internal repair and refurbishment of pipelines which can be used by a range of industries without having to stop production. It has also worked with partners on developing the pioneering Hullguard system of protecting floating offshore installations from corrosion without using divers which has been successfully deployed for the first time in the UK North Sea.
To fast-track other collaborative solutions, Forth is developing its 68,000 square-feet base in Cleator Moor as an innovation hub where products such as FSWbot will be developed. The company has also been on the frontline when it comes to fighting COVID-19. It has developed a disinfecting robot, and supplied disinfecting cannons, to help a range of industries, businesses and organisations welcome back staff and customers safely. Forth gave up its Cleator Moor office space for free during lockdown to charity Scrub Hub North West which delivered essential equipment to local hospitals.
Forth Engineering (Cumbria) Ltd is an award-winning UK advanced technology solutions business with bases at Maryport, Cleator Moor and Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria.
Forth’s Avexis robot is a previous winner of the Best Academic Collaboration Award at the Innovus Awards backed by the National Nuclear Laboratory and The University of Manchester’s Dalton Nuclear Institute to showcase pioneering technology being used in industry.