Shannon Regan | June 21st, 2018
The DT320 Mini Pipe Crawler is a remotely operated crawler vehicle for inspecting pipes as small as 6 inches in diameter. Based on a similar design to the DT340, the mini crawler raises the bar for confined space entry and inspection in the most remote locations.
The original vision of a tool for exploring wrecks, reefs, and underwater marine life soon became much more, as their robots were quickly adopted for use in potable and wastewater inspections.
“About a year after we sold the first ROVs to Norway for aquaculture inspections I got a phone call from a company in Florida,” explains Sam Macdonald, President of Deep Trekker Inc. “The company specializes in pipe inspections for water management, and had found our portable ROV, the DTG2, on the internet. Asking why he wasn’t using a traditional CCTV pipe inspection tool, he explained that they could not use a large truck, and the access points were only accessible by golf cart. He loved the one-man deployment and hand-held controller on our swimming robots.”
This served as an important moment for the company, and they began looking at how to take the principles of rugged, portable and easy-to-use technology, and bring them to a purpose-built pipe crawler. Like their underwater drones, Deep Trekker focuses on building a system that is fully integrated, meaning it has batteries on board the crawler, and doesn’t require the use of any third-party equipment, including computers, monitors, or generators.
As the design process for the portable pipe crawler took underway, it became evident that Deep Trekker would be able to take advantage of the many components and technologies being used in their underwater ROVs. With a mature supply chain and proven designs, the company was able to bring significant technology via tethers, batteries, monitoring and control systems to the new robots.
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City of Brantford Environmental Services DT340 Pipe Crawler
“I really liked the versatility of being able to send one guy in a truck to figure out exactly what we need to do,” exclaimed John Longo, Supervisor of the Water Distribution & Wastewater Collections Division for the City of Brantford. “No waiting on expensive emergency services or going in blind with our cutters, it just makes a lot of sense for us.”Lane Cleroux, Engineering Technician for the Town of Renfrew, expressed his satisfaction in the flexibility that the Deep Trekker DT340 offered to his small municipality.
“Not only did it make financial sense for us to own our own DT-340 pipe crawler, we opted to purchase the equipment so we can deploy the camera on our schedule rather than waiting on a contractor.”
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