The QUEST electric work-class ROV system from ALSTOM Schilling Robotics (ASR) has successfully completed an 8-day deepwater operational trial from on board the U.S. Navy’s M/V Independence off the Southern California coast. It was launched at sites ranging from 500-3000 m and subjected to a rigorous series of real-world tests in winter conditions to Sea State 5.
Exercises included six separate dives to the system rated depth of 3000 meters, with an accumulation of over 20 hours of bottom time. Each deep dive included multiple TMS/ROV docking operations and ROV excursions out to the full 350-meter tether length. The QUEST exhibited no pressure-related faults in the umbilical, tether, or buoyancy module, areas that have been problematic in recent deepwater ROV designs. The vehicle’s pilots reported that the QUEST’s multifunction hand controllers and touch-screen graphical user interface made operations and equipment adjustments easy and intuitive.
QUEST subsystems were exercised at a variety of depths during simulated work tasks that included launching, TMS/ROV de-mating, transit to the work site, and operation of tools and sensors. Specific tests were performed to validate the QUEST’s TrueWave power system, SeaNet telemetry system, SeaNet cable/connector system, electric ring motors (used in the thrusters, the HPU, and TMS drives), instrumented compensators, and rotary actuators.
After completion of the pre-delivery final acceptance test in Davis, California, QUEST System #1 will be shipped to Canyon Offshore.