Photo: Merlin Deepsea Riser System (Courtesy of Oil States Industries)

Industry-first as ABS reviews OSI’s deep-sea mineral riser system

American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) has reviewed a deep-sea mineral riser system developed by Oil States Industries (OSI).

In what has been described as an industry first, ABS design reviewed the Merlin Deepsea Riser System produced to collect polymetallic nodules 6,000 meters below the surface of the Pacific.

It is the first time a deep-sea mineral riser has undergone design review by the classification organization, said ABS.

The system is designed in accordance with the ABS Guide for Subsea Mining, which was published in October 2020 and sets out class requirements for the design, construction, installation and survey of mobile offshore mining units.

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According to ABS, the classification body supports OSI on the next phase of the project, which is the construction and certification of the riser.

“This technology opens up a new frontier in deep-sea mineral extraction, capable of operating in harsh conditions and at extreme depths. We are proud to be able to support this pioneering project”, said Matt Tremblay, ABS senior vice president, Global Offshore.

“ABS is committed to working to support the safe implementation of the technology, which has a role to play in securing the minerals utilized in electric vehicle batteries, solar panels, and other systems which support the energy transition”.

“We are pleased to have worked with ABS on the design review and qualification to Class requirements of this deep-sea mineral riser system”, said Brian Mizell, vice president of Business Development at OSI. “The design, manufacture, and deployment of this system further solidifies OSI’s position as a leading integrator of complete deep-sea minerals systems and supports our energy transition initiatives”.

In the first quarter of this year, the Merlin Riser has been contracted by Allseas to collect polymetallic nodules in the remote Pacific Ocean Clarion Clipperton Zone.