Case Study / Remote class survey (Lloyd’s Register)
Lloyd’s Register (LR) is a global professional services company, specialising in providing classification and compliance services to the marine and offshore industries. Harvest engaged LR to conduct the annual survey of its DP2 offshore support vessel “VOS Shine”.
LR is a world-leading class society with a global network of specialists and surveyors who provide trusted advice to ensure ships are built to the highest standards, operate safely, and comply with strict maritime and environmental regulations.
Due to the restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic and delayed offshore projects, the “VOS Shine” was on standby. Unable to secure sufficient berth space in Western Australia, the vessel transited to Adelaide, South Australia.
The “VOS Shine” was due for its annual survey in April 2020, while it was alongside in Adelaide. Typically, an annual survey is carried out by classification society appointed surveyor(s) who physically attend the vessel for 2-3 days. Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, the LR Senior Surveyor assigned to the “VOS Shine” was not able to travel from Perth to Adelaide.
Without a completed survey by the due date, the vessel would be deemed unseaworthy and thus unfit for any future project work.
Harvest proposed an innovative solution that would enable LR to conduct a remote survey trial using livestreaming technology.
This trial was supervised by an Adelaide based LR Surveyor and included a number of scenarios from the annual survey. Onboard the “VOS Shine” the vessel manager conducted the physical component of the inspection wearing a Wearwolf™ headset with the local LR Surveyor present. This was streamed to a Senior Surveyor in Perth via a NSM™ video decoder, for instruction and comment. The Vessel Manager and Remote Surveyor were able to communicate live and respond to video cues to confirm equipment condition and demonstrate functionality.
Wearwolf™ is an encoding software application that delivers reliable video and audio communications over satellite at ultra-low bandwidth. The headset is voice- activated and settings are adjustable on-the-fly. The NSM™ decoder received the video and audio and allowed for audio to be transmitted back to the Wearwolf™ headset in real-time.
Additionally, the video stream was distributed via Harvest’s AVRLive™ web platform so that other LR personnel could watch the survey securely online from their own device.
LR found that Wearwolf™ provided high-quality video at a range of different bandwidths, camera zoom levels, lighting and noise-cancelling functionalities for remote inspection.
The aim of the trial was to conduct a class survey from a remote location, witnessing sufficient information to support the survey without the need for all surveyors to be physically present on the vessel.
Harvest’s solution enabled LR to remotely conduct a portion of the VOS Shine annual survey.
Necessitated by COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, the trial enabled business continuity for both Harvest and LR. LR was able to continue to perform surveys when relevant personnel were not available onboard and a timely survey ensured compliance standards were met before the VOS Shine was reinstated for its next project.
Performing a remote survey meant reduced travel and personnel costs, the ability to remotely utilise expertise, and LR stakeholders in multiple locations could login to AVRLive™ and validate the survey. It also created a new audit trail through recording of the video, and collaboration between multiple Surveyors in real-time as well as the Vessel Manager through quality two-way audio feedback.
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