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Oil and gas industry interest is surging in using remote survey technologies for more cost-efficient, safer, and lower-carbon certification, verification, and inspection of assets and operations. Amid COVID-19 travel restrictions in 2020, DNV GL has conducted more than 4,000 remote surveys for the sector. These have provided the supply chain with the assurance it needs to keep projects and operations running safely and on schedule. Remote surveys involve fixed and mobile cameras (e.g., smartphones) giving customers instant access to DNV GL experts worldwide for verification, classification, and certification of assets, verification of materials and components, inspection, and marine assurance. The growing track record for remote survey technology could soon make it the method of choice for inspections in some places and circumstances, according to a senior expert at one leading oil and gas exploration and production company.
The first wind turbine installation vessel compliant with the US Jones Act is being built by Keppel Offshore & Marine for Richmond, Virginia-based Dominion Energy. The Jones Act is the common name for federal laws that regulate maritime commerce in the US and require goods shipped between US ports to be transported on ships that are built, owned, and operated by US citizens or permanent residents. Work on the vessel, to be named Charybdis (the name of a sea monster in Greek mythology), began 16 December with a keel-laying ceremony—when fabrications from the first steel, supplied domestically, were laid to form the first part of the keel. Keppel AmFELS is building the vessel, scheduled for 2023 delivery, in its Brownsville, Texas, shipyard and will base operations out of Hampton Roads, Virginia. It will be available for charter hire to offshore wind developers to support the installation of more than 5 GW of planned offshore wind generation off the east coast through 2027 and beyond.