MCS Leads the Way with Emerging Technology

Subsea engineering company, MCS, in partnership with Fugro GEOS, is launching break-through technology at OTC that will immediately alert offshore personnel to problems with riser systems before they become unsafe or lead to costly shut-downs.

The emerging technology is a software and instrumentation package for monitoring vibration on riser systems – a major problem for operators and drilling companies particularly in the Gulf of Mexico where there are loop currents.

VIVOL – Vortex Induced Vibration On-line – comprises riser-mounted sensors and a PC to monitor the levels of vibration to which risers are subjected. It does not require any interface with other vessel systems and can be installed very easily.

"The beauty of VIVOL is that it provides accurate, real-time information on what is happening to the riser to allow preventative measures to be taken to reduce risk of failure," explains Donogh Lang, group software business development manager, MCS.

"It is an inexpensive and stand-alone system that can be easily installed on existing drilling risers and with minimum impact on other operations."

VIVOL is installed on a drilling riser for a drilling company at a location where there is the potential for high currents and therefore a risk of vortex induced vibration. It can then be removed if the drilling vessel or rig is moved to a location where the conditions do not pose a threat to the riser.

Mr. Lang adds: "This makes VIVOL an attractive rental proposition and indeed we anticipate that operators and drilling companies will rent the equipment and software for fixed periods allowing flexibility and cost efficiency."

With the company's extensive experience in riser systems and advanced engineering, MCS is continually developing revolutionary systems and software to meet the increasingly demanding requirements of complex subsea operations in challenging environments.

It is currently broadening its suite of software products and venturing into new geographic markets. The global software team is growing with the strategic hires of Pat Scully as general manager of the division and, more recently, the senior appointment of Robert Bayes who will be working as part of the software business development team in Houston.