ROV dives deep into huge dam

Robot is lowered deep inside a well within the huge structure

Author: Pat
3rd May 2019

The 50kg ROV is lowered deep inside the Ridracoli dam

How do you dive inside a colossal 103-metre high dam to inspect the structure is safe? You lower an ROV.

Engineers recently lowered a large inspection class ROV (remotely operated vehicle) weighing a hefty 50 kilos to get a good look at the inside of the Ridracoli dam.

Ridracoli dam holds back 33 million cubic metres of water

The dam, located in northern Italy, was completed in 1982 and holds back 33 million cubic metres of water.

During the operation the team carefully lowered the robot down 50 metres into the gloom, using a reinforced and directly connected umbilical designed and produced by Novacavi.

The view from deep inside the dam was transmitted back to the surface over a hybrid optical fibre cable, allowing the inspection team to complete the job safely.

Despite the confines of the well and challenging fresh water environment the heavy ROV performed perfectly during the survey. The successful mission was helped by the neutrally buoyant cable which satisfied and exceeded the high breaking load and strict excellent tensile strength requirements.

Video Ray image courtesy Jan Henrik Bentsen of Dagfin Skaar AS

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