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Snake-like robots: are we contemplating a safest future for subsea operations?

Snake-like robots are inspired by the stability and wave-like locomotion of serpents and it presents itself as a solution to allow mobility in challenging and unknown environments, such as deep-waters, remote mountains and even the human body. Offshore companies, such as Statoil and Kongsberg Maritime in Norway and CYC International in Singapore have been using these robots to improve the safety of subsea inspection and maintenance. 

The main feature of a snake-like robot is its complex connected joint modules that are capable of bending in one or more planes. These connected joints allow the robot to move in serpentine locomotion, making it easy to swim into deep and complex structures undersea managing a variety of tasks. The robots must be integrated with a microcontroller, guaranteeing its autonomy and remote control.

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Since 2003, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) has been working to create snake-like robots. The idea was conceived as a solution to assist humans to reach extreme environment with the agility of a snake. 

Eelume, a spin-off of NTNU, with the support of Research Council of Norway and Innovation Norway has created a robot based on water snakes, projected to live underwater. The main goal is to operate this robot to do inspection and light intervention jobs under the sea, reducing the need of using large and expensive vessels. 

Safety in marine operations is one of offshore company’s main objective and snake-like robots can help achieving this goal. Another way of preventing accidents is having the knowledge of oceans meteorological conditions. Open Ocean has created Metocean Analytics, a revolutionary software which combines Terabytes of data to give your company the most relevant information about sea conditions, with relevant statistics to fulfill your company's needs.

For further information on how we can help you, feel free to contact us and ask for a demo.