Integrity management (IM) is an ongoing lifecycle process for ensuring safe operation and fitness for service of offshore oil and gas production systems, including riser and flowlines. Riser and flowlines offer a means of transporting fluids between subsea wells and the host platform. A key component of the riser system is above water riser hull pipes. With their proximity to topside equipment and the people on the platform, these pipes are considered safety critical, and are therefore, subject to rigorous and frequent inspections followed by an engineering assessment of the findings. A thorough knowledge of the past and current conditions of these pipes is required to manage the risk to their integrity. Traditionally, these inspections are carried out by rope access technicians. Such activities are often limited by accessibility, weather, and/or Personnel on Board (POB) availability and involve risks to inspector's safety.
This paper discusses the motivation and business driver for developing and implementing new robotic inspection technologies for above water riser inspection. The technology management process of robotic inspection tools is outlined. Comparison is made between traditional and new inspection technologies based on BP Gulf of Mexico (GoM) robotic inspection campaigns. Examples are presented to demonstrate the reduction of safety risks and improvement of inspection execution and effectiveness. The paper also discusses the potential areas of future development, which include methods for pipe wall thickness measurement and data analytics, such as automated recognition approach to characterize and quantify features in the images.