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Square Robot thruster operations testing complete

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Picture of Meenal Datar

Meenal Datar

Membership specialist

Autonomous robotic solutions company, Square Robot, has completed a successful test of a new thruster submerged in motor gasoline. Two thirds of the tanks in the world contain crude oil or another low flashpoint product, which make them challenging for in-service robotic inspections.

The test included operation of a thruster at a nominal speed in oil for a minimum of six hours as well as disassembling and inspecting the thruster at the completion of the test period. The main objective of the test was to ensure the thruster could operate in this kind of hazardous environment at normal speed and load with no material degradation to any of its components or of its overall performance.

At the conclusion of the test, the thruster met or exceeded all objectives that were set throughout the six hour test and showed no signs of any chemical corrosion or function prohibiting wear at the point of disassembly.

‘This was an incredible achievement for the team, we’ve been researching and developing technology to address the challenges that gasoline and other low flashpoint materials bring, so it was great to get the continuous operations test completed and have it be such a success,’ says Charles O’Connell, director of mechanical engineering.

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