DNV GL cuts tanker inspection costs in UAE with drones

DNV GL believes this solution can save anywhere from two days to a week on survey time.
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The ship classification society DNV GL, which has its Middle East head office in Dubai, has revealed a new drone survey inspection solution for tankers that can save owners up to US $100,000.

The solution was first introduced in January last year, but has seen the most traction in terms of interest from vessel owners and operators during the first quarter of 2018.

“We have two surveyors who are trained to carry out the survey with the drones and to do survey work on various vessels,” says Geir Fuglerud, area manager, Middle East and Africa, DNV GL. “We target younger vessels on their first or second renewal and we use it more to confirm a good condition rather than to spot areas that need closer inspection.”

According to Fuglerud, carrying out the inspection with a drone rather than by the naked eye is beneficial because it saves owners time and money.

“This is especially the case for bigger vessels, where the height from the top to the bottom of the tank can exceed 20 to 25-metres, which requires a significant amount of staging,” he explains.

“To build up staging in several tanks that size is expensive and time-consuming, taking several days to a week,” he adds. “With the drones we can do the work in an hour or so and confirm the condition of the tank, which is sufficient for accreditation of that vessel.”

As a result, DNV GL believes this solution can save anywhere from two days to a week on survey time. The owner will save significantly on staging costs, typically up to US $100,000, according to Fuglerud.

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