Oceaneering Uses SolidWorks Software to Design ROVs

Oceaneering International, Inc., one of the world's largest operators and manufacturers of remotely operated vehicles, uses SolidWorks(R) three-dimensional computer-aided design (3D CAD) software to develop vehicles and tools that support the oil and gas and telecommunication industries around the world. SolidWorks' 3D CAD software reduces Oceaneering's design time by optimizing the way engineers create and fit different parts together and thereby minimizing production errors. These capabilities enable Oceaneering to quickly build remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) that meet their customers' challenging requirements.

Oceaneering uses SolidWorks software to design products that will perform tasks in very demanding environments. The company used SolidWorks to design its latest two classes of ROVs, the eMagnum(TM), an electric ROV, and the Minimum, a small, electric observation vehicle. Both vehicles are designed to operate at 10,000 feet below sea level and can work together or separately providing visual and intervention support to a variety of oil and gas operations. Oceaneering also uses SolidWorks to design custom tools for these vehicles for a variety of purposes such as the recovery of the first submarine (the Hunley), the Titanic salvage, the Bismark/ HMS Hood survey, and the Ehime Maru salvage.

Oceaneering, along with Boeing and Fugro, have also completed designing and are presently assembling an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) that will map the ocean floor for customers requiring survey information prior to laying and/or burying cable or pipe.

Oceaneering chose SolidWorks because its Windows-based environment is easy to navigate, enabling engineers and designers to develop 3D solid models more quickly than with other CAD technologies. SolidWorks' short learning curve allows Chief Engineer Peter Moles to train new engineers and designers in a matter of weeks, if not days, as compared to months using other software. This shortened training cycle lets engineers begin working on actual product designs faster than with more complicated CAD technology.

SolidWorks also enables Oceaneering's engineers to see how moving parts within a design may cause interference, and therefore affect production and performance. "SolidWorks' 3D solid models allow us to study every angle and intricate detail of our machines to ensure that no errors are made from fabrication to completing tasks on the ocean floor," said Moles. "However, while reliability is crucial, performance and time to market are also important to our customers in the petroleum and telecommunications industries. SolidWorks software helps us give customers the products they need in the timeframe they demand."