Remoras patented HiLoad Attachment System developed as an offshore loading system for crude oil



The HiLoad technology was originally developed as an offshore loading system for crude oil, the HiLoad DP. The core technology is built around Remora's patented HiLoad Attachment System, based on suction cups that are capable of transferring several thousand tons between the HiLoad and the connected object.

The attachment principles are based on basic laws of nature - hydrostatic pressure and friction - combined with the common design feature of all tanker vessels: a flat bottom and straight sides. A HiLoad vessel can therefore dock onto and provide station keeping to any non-dedicated tanker or barge, without any need for modifications to the hull structure. The HiLoad units replace the hydrostatic pressure working on the tanker bottom, resulting in a robust friction force more than 20 times larger than needed to station keep the tanker in rough sea states. If additional friction should be needed due to bad weather and local operational criteria, the attachment system is also designed to provide additional vacuum force.

The HiLoad systems can adopt operation anywhere in the world, at any field installation, in any water depth and under harsh environmental conditions.
Other applications have also been identified, and Remora is currently offering a portfolio of solutions for:

• Turret Mooring Systems for FSOs and FPSOs.

• Add-on Propulsion Units for semis, barges and ship shape hulls.

• Import Terminals for crude oil and other petroleum products.

All HiLoads are L-shaped, with slim towers penetrating the wave zone. The HiLoads connect to other vessels similar to how a forklift lifts a pallet: moving in underneath and lifting it up using a ballast pump system. The slim towers enable smooth motions even in rough seas due to small buoyancy variations as well as small wave-induced loads.

Due to its favorable motion characteristics, the HiLoad technology is suitable for use in most offshore markets including harsh environments. It is cost competitive for both marginal and large field developments, due to flexible commercial solutions.

The HiLoad technology is protected by patents.

HiLoad Attachment System :
Each HiLoad unit is equipped with the patented HiLoad Attachment System. This means that the contact area between the HiLoad and the bottom of the connecting vessel is covered by heavy duty friction fenders, arranged in cells and surrounded by a gasket system. The gasket is of a compression type, and has a long track record from its use in subsea tunnels.

As the HiLoad is deballasted into contact with a hull bottom the gaskets create a number of cofferdams between the HiLoad and the vessel. By draining the entrapped water and at the same time, letting air in from the surface, atmospheric pressure is obtained within each cell. As a result, the hydrostatic pressure acting underneath the HiLoad is transferred as a distributed load across the entire contact area. Despite a contact force of several thousand tons, the effect on the vessel is minimal. The contact force will basically be the same as the hydrostatic load prior to connecting. The HiLoad components will therefore stay attached to a tank ship but with no mechanical connections and without adding additional forces to the tanker hull, thus reducing operational risk compared with existing systems.

The HiLoad Attachment System has been tested in full scale with excellent results.


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