SMD begins assembling collecting machine for Nautilus MineralsVessel & ROV News // May 29, 2014
Nautilus Minerals has announced that assembly of its second of three Seafloor Production Tools (SPTs), the Collecting Machine (CM), has commenced at Soil Machine Dynamics' (SMD) facility in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK.
Nautilus' CEO, Mike Johnston said: "Having already announced in April this year the completion of the assembly of the Bulk Cutter (BC), we are delighted that the assembly of the CM has now commenced, with the arrival of the chassis at the SMD facility.
"This is an exciting time for the company as we continue with the build of the seafloor production equipment. We look forward to the commencement of the assembly of the third and final SPT, the Auxiliary Cutter (AC), when its chassis is delivered next month."
The CM is the lightest of the three SPTs weighing 200 tonnes when fully assembled. It is designed to collect material cut from the seafloor by drawing it in as seawater slurry with internal pumps and pushing it through a flexible pipe to the Riser and Lifting System (RALS) and onto the Production Support Vessel (PSV), arrangements for which are to be in place by the end of the year.
Subsea vehicle designer and manufacturer, SMD of Newcastle upon Tyne, UK, is the company responsible for building the SPTs for Nautilus.
The excavation and collection of mineralised material has been split into three individual tasks, which will each be carried out by a different SPT.
The AC is designed as the pioneering tool which prepares the rugged sea bed for the more powerful BC. These two tools gather the excavated material; the third, the CM, will collect the cut material by drawing it in as seawater slurry with internal pumps and pushing it through a flexible pipe to the subsea pump and on to the PSV via the RALS.