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Using ROVs to Maximize Crew Safety

Rachel Doornekamp   |   May 20, 2020

Deep Trekker is proud to provide mission-ready submersible remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) to the defense industry.

Applications such as target location, identification and payload delivery in EOD/MCM missions, salvage operations, critical infrastructure inspection, ship husbandry, and damage control/battle damage assessment are greatly simplified and much safer using Deep Trekker’s simple, capable, and reliable platforms.

Deep Trekker offers two advanced ROVs in the DTG3 and REVOLUTION. The DTG3 is a mini observation-class underwater ROV built to provide operators the ability to quickly deploy and visually inspect within underwater environments. Equipped with an internal pivoting 4k camera, the unit can hold position in the water while the camera is rotated 270° above and below. With expert engineering and the help of gravity, the ROV shell and thrusters can be rotated while gravity holds down the internal semi-circle weighted frame, allowing the ROV to drive straight up and down, side to side, forwards and backwards while using the same thrusters.

The Deep Trekker REVOLUTION is a completely re-imagined ROV. This mission-ready ROV offers greater payload capabilities, deeper depths, and advanced stabilization.The patented pending revolving head allows operators to rotate the camera, manipulators, and sonar 260° all while station holding in moving water. The 6 vectored thrusters allow for lateral movement side to side and precise turning forward and backward, providing maximum control and advanced station holding.

Powered by BRIDGE technology, both the DTG3 and the REVOLUTION offer simplified controls, seamless integration, constant communication and enhanced operations.

Why Deep Trekker for Defense?

Deep Trekker’s versatile and durable ROVs are perfect for the defense industry. Designed to work in the toughest conditions, Deep Trekker ROVs are dependable and capable.

All configurations are battery-powered and operate several hours on a single charge, meaning no external power sources are required to complete the mission. Smart design paired with the lack of external power makes Deep Trekker ROVs easily portable for missions in any location.

Rapid and convenient deployment means that operators can get to work quickly and efficiently. Both the DTG3 and Revolution ROVs can be out of the case and in the water in under a minute.

The open platform, modular ROVs accept a variety of sensors including imaging and navigation sonars, USBL tracking systems, multi-function manipulators with a variety of attachments, and non destructive testing tools such as the ultrasonic thickness gauge, among other options. With mission specific underwater tools, users can be ready for whatever task is thrown their way.

Using Deep Trekker ROVs, crew safety can be maximized through a variety of applications and missions.

Situational Awareness

Today’s defense vessels are advanced, cutting edge vehicles filled with a multitude of sensors and equipment to monitor operations within the ship. What many may be lacking however, is situational awareness of the ship’s hull.

From debris to adversaries, there are many instances where the hull could be potentially damaged. A Deep Trekker ROV provides a quick and accurate way for a team to inspect any potential damage.

Take for example, an alarming sound heard scraping against the hull while in the middle of an ocean. What is your next move? If you’re like most defense ships the next step is a laborious one. Limp the ship back home or to the nearest (potentially foreign) fort. Following the scheduling of divers, the ship has to be tagged out and wait for divers to arrive. After ensuring safety and security procedures are met, the divers can then enter the water to determine what the issue is, however minor it may actually be. This entire process could be greatly expedited through the use of a Deep Trekker robot.

By using an ROV to enhance situational awareness, crew members are kept safer when taking on the open seas.

Vessel Inspections

The importance of vessel inspections are two-fold; to ensure structural integrity and safety, and to ensure the safety and security of a port.

Frequent hull inspections allow minor issues to be caught before they become major problems. Protecting the integrity of a ship’s hull is extremely important in order to keep a vessel at peak performance. In addition to negatively impacting speed and fuel efficiency, a damaged hull can be harmful to the ship, crew, cargo, and surrounding marine life. While regular hull inspections are a necessity for optimal vessel performance they can be difficult. In addition to being expensive, dry docking takes ships out of commission for extended periods of time. Hiring divers not only requires time and money, but also potentially puts people into dangerous situations.With ROVs providing an efficient method of hull inspection, vessels can be consistently monitored to optimize maintenance schedules and maximize performance, while keeping crew members safe.

The entirety of an incoming vessel also needs to be inspected to ensure the safety and security of a port. ROVs allow port authority and border security professionals to perform hull inspections on every single vessel that passes through their waters without ever having to incur the high costs and delays of sending a human into the water or dry-docking. Using an ROV means that virtually all submerged sections of a vessel can be thoroughly checked for any contraband or threats that may be attached. In murky, turbid water sonar provides effective technology for getting a strong visual of the ship.

The use of an ROV allows divers to avoid going into potentially dangerous situations. With confined spaces and moving vessels, ports can be a dangerous place for divers to be underwater. Contraband inspections, with possibly dangerous materials, add to the risk factor. ROVs allow for underwater security inspections to be performed on a regular basis without risk to a human being. Should a diver need to get into the water, an ROV can be sent down prior to the person to allow for a safety scan of the area.

Diver Safety

Submersible ROVs provide valuable assistance to divers in numerous ways. Primarily, ROVs can go into precarious situations in lieu of a diver, keeping humans safe and out of harm’s way. Get eyes underwater in a safe and reliable way, without endangering human divers.

In terms of vessel inspections, as mentioned above, the use of an ROV keeps divers out of tight, dangerous situations. With large, moving vessels and confined spaces, ports can be a treacherous place for a diver to be. The potential for encountering contraband items further increases the potential for danger. With an ROV, human divers can completely avoid entering waters in these situations.

Should a diver need to enter the water, an ROV can be sent down first to do a pre-dive safety check of the area. This pre-dive inspection allows for any potential trouble spots to be identified before the diver encounters them, allowing for effective problem solving topside rather than solving underwater while using up oxygen.

The ROV can also be used for live, underwater monitoring while the diver is at work. Topside operators can monitor the diver in action to ensure that the mission is going smoothly or to alert the diver of any potential dangers they may have missed. Should an emergency situation arise, help will be able to get to work immediately.

Furthermore, the use of Deep Trekker’s Diveable Control System assists divers by allowing them to control the ROV from under the water. Divers can send the ROV ahead into risky situations to investigate before going in themselves.

Target Identification

Hidden below the ocean’s surface are a multitude of unknowns ranging from unidentified species to missing shipwrecks. Among these unknowns are munitions dropped into the ocean around the globe during decades of military training and conflict. Today, the locations and state of these munitions is of ever-increasing concern due to the potential hazards they pose to surrounding ecosystems and people that may come in contact with them.

With the use of an ROV, targets can be identified safely and remotely. ROVs are able to provide crucial information including the location of underwater munitions, as well as the condition of the waters around the munitions, to help devise a safe plan for removal.

With the use of add-on sonars, large underwater areas can be scanned safely and efficiently using a Deep Trekker ROV.

Learn more about how ROVs can enhance port safety by checking out our blog, you can also read more about underwater ROVs for situational awareness.

If you have any questions don’t hesitate to reach out to our team of industry experts. If you are ready to take the plunge get an ROV of your own, request your customized quote today!