HISTORY repeated itself yesterday as a subsea company unveiled the latest pioneering piece of Tyneside technology.SMD, a leading designer and maker of specialised underwater robot vehicles, is setting up a new base at the Turbinia works site at Davy Bank in Wallsend, which will be officially opened on April 25.
This is where, from 1898, the steam turbine inventor Sir Charles Parsons worked on his engines and Turbinia, then the fastest boat afloat.
Yesterday SMD loaded UT1 (Ultra Trencher 1), a remote controlled submersible robot (ROV), on to a ship for delivery to CTC Marine Projects. The pounds 10m machine will be the world’s largest ROV which is capable of self propelling and supporting its own weight in water.
Weighing 50 tonnes and the size of small house, it is designed to bury largediameter oil and gas pipelines laid on the ocean floor.
It does this by “flying” down up to a mile deep below the surface using powerful propellers.
It then lands over the pipeline and deploys a pair of “jet swords” either side of the pipe which inject high pressure water to “fluidise” the surface.
You’ll get fluidised all right. As mentioned, bow before the jet swords of doom. This is your last warning.