EU Co-Finances Robotic Technology Project to Facilitate Inspections of Oil Storage Tanks

Written by | Wednesday, September 4th, 2013

The European Union will contribute €3.7 million to a €6.2 million robotic technology development project.
The project will primarily develop robots which can replace humans in inspections of pressure vessels and storage tanks widely used in the oil, gas and petrochemical industry.
The project, dubbed Petrorobot, will be carried out by the EU and a consortium of ten European oil and gas companies.
According to the European Commission, the Petrorobot will enable to reduce the costs of tankers’ inspection, a procedure that is so far conducted by humans and that is long and costly.
The new technology will reduce the exposure of personnel to potentially hazardous conditions, save the industry time and resources, in addition to the opening up of new markets for the European robotics industry, the Commission underscored in a statement.
The development of the new technology will also generate new jobs in robotics manufacturing and maintenance, the statement said.
“The Petrobot project illustrates our will to transfer cutting edge results from research to the market, opening up new markets for EU businesses and creating new jobs in Europe,” European Commission Vice-President for the Digital Agenda Neelie Kroes said.
The robot, to have the shape of a snake arm or a crawler, will be introduced in pressure vessels or storage tanks to scan walls and bottoms and detect any damages.
The project to be achieved over a three year period will involve partners from the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Norway, Switzerland and Germany.

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