Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas)‘s technology commercialization arm Petronas Technology Ventures Sdn Bhd (PTVSB) said Friday it has entered into a partnership with Waygate Technologies Robotics AG (WTR) to commercialise a jointly developed robotic inspection device and scale its utilisation in the oil and gas industry.

Petronas said in a statement that based on the BIKE robotic system, the device enables improved data management and inspection of confined or hard-to-reach spaces in oil and gas facilities – onshore and offshore. The enhanced technology includes a cleaning tool as well as additional ultrasonic and eddy current inspection capabilities.

Under the agreement, Petronas will deploy the updated BIKE robot in more facilities, while WTR will provide comprehensive training and support services. The agreement also marks the commitment by both companies to promote uptake of the device among its partners and customers.

“Petronas is pleased to join forces with the robotics team at WTR for their vast experience and patents in mobile robots and inspection technologies. Coupled with the vision and capability of our research and development (R&D) team, we could create solutions that would benefit our inspection and maintenance operations, as well as streamline our asset management. We also look forward to offering these solutions to other companies in the future,” said PTVSB Chief Executive Officer Mahpuzah Abai.

The companies are also co-developing two new versions of the tool, the BIKE I-Beam, designed to overcome specific obstacles and sharp edges in confined spaces, and a micro crawler version to facilitate inspection of smaller pipes.

“Petronas has been a valued customer of our nondestructive testing (NDT) solutions for years and we are thrilled to now also be able to help advance their remote inspection and cleaning procedures. Our R&D teams have been working closely together to tailor our robotic BIKE platform to their specific challenges. The result is a solution that will allow Petronas to minimize safety risks for their personnel as well as the overall downtime of their assets around the globe,” said WTR Executive General Manager of Visual and Robotic Inspection Solutions Michael Domke.

For WTR, the agreement seals another milestone in its strategy to strengthen its automated data caption capabilities and drive innovations that will enhance its customers’ productivity and competitiveness. Robotic inspection solutions are part of its mission as part of the energy technology ecosystem to make energy operations safer and more efficient for people and the planet.

Petronas is a dynamic global energy group with presence in over 50 countries. It produces and delivers energy and solutions that power society’s progress in a responsible and sustainable manner. It seeks energy potential across the globe, optimizing value through its integrated business model. Its portfolio includes cleaner conventional and renewable resources and a ready range of advanced products and adaptive solutions.

Waygate Technologies is an industrial inspection solutions provider and the world leader in nondestructive testing (NDT) ensuring safety, quality and productivity. It combines more than 125 years of experience and a collection of heritage brands including Krautkrämer, phoenix|x-ray, Seifert, Everest and Agfa NDT. It drives digital transformation through a broad portfolio of solutions in industrial radiography and computed tomography (CT), remote visual inspection (RVI), ultrasound (UT), eddy current, and robotic inspection. Headquartered in Germany, it is part of the digital solutions segment of Baker Hughes.

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