Offshore inspection equipment wins manus award18 April 2019

An offshore inspection unit from remote intervention tooling and subsea engineering specialist ToolTec has won the 5,000 euros manus award 2019.

The prize, awarded by igus for the creative use of high-performance plastic bearings, saw 445 inventors from 32 countries apply.

The device from the Scottish mechanical engineering company allows operators of underwater oil and gas platforms to clean and inspect pipelines remotely.

The offshore inspection device wraps itself around the pipe like a sleeve and moves forward on rollers. While moving, the machine cleans the pipeline and inspects it for weak points.

Only polymer bearings were considered by the engineers during the design phase as metallic bearings would have been susceptible to corrosion and require regular maintenance.

The engineering team specified iglidur plain bearings, drylin linear guides and an e-chain for safe cable guidance, which makes a 360-degree rotary movement. These components are lubrication-free, providing maintenance-free dry running, as well as corrosion resistance to salty seawater.

Second place went to a floating catamaran made by Munich-based manufacturer CEC Catamarans, and third place went to the French company Kempf, for its digital accelerator ring called ‘DARIOS’.

Adam Offord

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Igus (UK) Ltd

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