Nordic Unmanned & Equinor ship to offshore oil rig Troll A – Drones Information


AUGUST 28, 2020, Mongstad, Vestland – On August 27, Equinor and Nordic Unmanned made global aviation history by conducting an advanced BVLOS long-haul unmanned flight to provide Troll A with a 3D printed component 100 km (55 nm ) each way and was carried out from Mongstad.

A CAMCOPTER® S-100 from Schiebel was used, a tried and tested unmanned helicopter with an empty weight of 110 kg, a payload of 50 kg and a typical service life of up to 8 hours. In addition, a close visual inspection of Troll A outside the 500 meter zone and a search and rescue operation together with the rescue ship at Troll A were carried out. The entire operation went according to plan for the relevant stakeholders.

This is a world first in terms of the full delivery of offshore drones from shore to an active oil and gas facility. It’s high endurance and long range beyond line of sight through normal airspace. With this project, Equinor takes the lead in unmanned logistics and turns bold ambitions and strategies into action. Drone operations like these have a 55 times smaller carbon footprint than cargo deliveries with manned alternatives.

Knut Roar Wiig, CEO of Nordic Unmanned, emphasized the importance of this operation. “This is a major milestone, not only for our company, but also for the unmanned aviation industry. With the world’s first operation, Nordic Unmanned becomes one of the world’s leading companies in complex unmanned operations. Thanks to a very close and good collaboration with Equinor and Schiebel, we have managed to beat the drone freight programs of the global technology companies. “

The unmanned industry is developing rapidly and the professional part of the industry is starting to adopt traditional aviation best practices in terms of safety, regulations and certifications. By using our experience and highly qualified employees and partners, Nordic Unmanned works continuously to pursue groundbreaking projects and untapped potential that advance the industry in great strides. Long-term unmanned logistics is expected to be a large and important market segment as it reduces the carbon footprint, risk and costs. Nordic Unmanned has set itself the task of developing and improving new innovative concepts and putting them into practice for our courageous and visionary customers.

Pål Kristensen, Business Unit Manager, Logistics and Robotization at Nordic Unmanned, endeavored to highlight the teamwork behind such an achievement. “The operation we performed today is a great example of how we at Nordic Unmanned are working with a discerning customer to implement the latest unmanned technology. This marks the beginning of a new chapter in unmanned logistics. The technology is proven and robust enough to be implemented on a large scale and drastically reduces risk costs and environmental footprint. The good cooperation with Equinor, Schiebel, Avinor, the Norwegian Communications Authority and Norwegian Civil Aviation has made it possible to complete this project from the end of the feasibility study to the end of operations in less than 4 months. I am honored to have led this project for Nordic Unmanned. “

Troll A is an excellent destination for this record-breaking flight as it is the crown jewel of the Condeep platforms that pioneered the fjords of the Stavanger region back in the 1990s. It is 472 m high, has a dry matter weight of 656,000 tons and is one of the most complex engineering projects in history. It is the largest concrete platform ever moved offshore, and it is the tallest man-made object moved by humans on the surface of the earth. Given that Nordic Unmanned is from the Stavanger region and is the record-breaking character of Troll A, it is a suitable place for that great technological and strategically important leap after Troll A.

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