Forecourt Trader - 30 years at the heart of the fuel retailing community

Robot will inspect tank while product is still present

John Wood ·

A robot that will allow tanks to be inspected while they are still in service is being developed by Phillips 66, the owner of the Jet brand.

Working with Square Robot, a Boston-based start-up, the two companies are developing an autonomous robot that would have the capability to inspect petroleum storage tank floors while product remains in the tank.

The untethered robot is being designed and will be certified for use in a wide range of petroleum products. The robot is expected to enter service in mid-2018.

Above ground storage tanks are routinely removed from service to be drained, opened and cleaned at great expense in order to evaluate tank bottoms. The new robot is being developed to automatically survey and map obstacles within a tank while the tank remains in static service, creating a specific route map allowing maximum coverage of the tank floor. Using the non-destructive testing (NDT) data gathered, a certified inspector will produce a floor thickness map allowing for a more accurate prediction of a tank floor’s remaining life.

“Our collaboration with Phillips 66 provides access to a significant team of experts in NDT inspection, safety, procedures and operations,” said Eric Levitt, Square Robot co-founder. “As a start-up, we would not have access to these tremendous resources outside of our core business of developing autonomous robots for confined spaces.”

“Ensuring the integrity of our equipment is one of our top priorities and we are always looking for innovative new technologies to help us achieve this,” said Todd Denton, general manager, Midstream Operations, Phillips 66. “Our collaboration with Square Robot presents a unique opportunity to develop technology that will enable us to maintain our equipment and minimise disruption to our customers.”

Want more stories like this in your inbox?

Sign up for our FREE email newsletter

Keywords:

  • Weekly
    Retail
  • Weekly
    wholesale
  • Daily
    Average
Weekly retail fuel prices: 20 May 2019
RegionDieselLPGSuper ULUL
East135.9360.77140.55130.16
East Midlands135.28141.26129.82
London135.21142.69130.48
North East134.06140.71129.20
North West134.87139.96129.27
Northern Ireland131.95135.90127.71
Scotland135.09139.31129.71
South East135.9463.57142.34130.70
South West135.01139.53129.65
Wales134.52138.23128.74
West Midlands134.83141.89129.64
Yorkshire & Humber134.1257.70141.27129.10

Most read

Following last month's London protests and damage to Shell's UK HQ, do you believe forecourts should be preparing themselves in case of possible attacks by climate change campaigners?