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Video: Deep Sea: Hydraulic Robot In Endurance Test
2023 Author: Hannah Pearcy | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-08-25 03:36
Deep-sea robots use extensive electromechanical and electro-hydraulic subsystems for their work. It is crucial that they are immediately ready for use when needed and that their downtime in the event of a malfunction is kept to a minimum. This is where the advantages of hydraulic drives come to the fore: They are powerful, compact, precise, intelligent and at the same time robust. They offer excellent power density and flexibility for a whole range of applications. On this basis, developers of ROVs and AUVs try to make the integrated electrohydraulic systems even more powerful and reliable.
Cross-technology networking of machine tools
Pressure equalization is necessary for all systems that are used under water. It helps to keep the pressure between the external environment and the tank constant, as the seals are normally designed only for a limited pressure drop in a certain direction. Although complex and expensive, designers can solve this problem, for example, by sealing the pressure-sensitive components in a protective chamber. This is usually a rigid container with high performance seals that can withstand the high pressure. However, pressure equalization is an even more effective solution. With this method, pressure is applied in the component that corresponds to and counteracts the ambient pressure outside.
The material surface is also important - for example in hydraulic cylinders. The surface of the cylinder piston rod must be coated to suit the application in order to offer a good and long-term basis with its tribological properties. Significant progress has been made in the field of cylinder coating technology. This also includes metallic / metal mixing systems with high-speed flame spraying (HVOF) or cobalt alloy layers that are applied by means of plasma welding.
More security and reliability
Most hydraulic systems must meet special safety standards for absolutely trouble-free operation. Therefore, the hydraulic system automatically switches to a safe mode if the power supply fails thanks to remote shutdown. These principles of risk assessment and functional safety have been defined on the basis of international standards such as ISO 12100, ISO 13849 and ISO 4413.
Oil and gas operators expect deep sea equipment to remain functional with minimal maintenance throughout its useful life, which can be up to 30 years or more. This requires suitable, pressure-resistant sensors to detect system malfunctions and, if possible, to predict future malfunctions thanks to monitoring the operating status.
As companies venture into ever greater depths, the basic technical requirements, particularly for hydraulically operated systems, increase. These requirements can be met by a combination of standard components that have proven themselves in rough conditions on land. This approach enables designers to develop economic systems and thus explore the potential in the deep sea.
Underwater work tool for oil platform on the seabed
The suitability of such an underwater device for depths of at least 2000 m has been demonstrated with a demonstrator on a scale of 1: 2. As part of the project "Integrated Systems for Underwater Oil and Gas Production" (ISUP), Rexroth, as a development cooperation partner, implemented the hydraulic system development for a remote-controlled underwater work tool. Once positioned on the seabed, it performs a wide variety of tasks largely independently. The device is mounted on a crawler and prepares the underwater floor for installations with a dozer blade.
A five-axis large manipulator grabs lowered components and places them in a targeted manner. The specially developed power-transmitting multi-coupling enables a tool change without water or dirt getting into the hydraulic, electrical and IT network systems. Secure connections to the hydraulic circuit, the power supply and the signal transmission via optical fibers are closed within the coupling. Offshore specialists from the drive and control manufacturer have largely built it up from standard components and checked it in simulations and in a pressure chamber up to 600 bar. Rexroth is constantly developing Subsea hydraulics. (br)
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