Friday, December 10, 2010

Royal Purple keeps Doc Ricketts Roving

MBARI Doc Ricketts
Deep on the ocean floor at depths of 4,000m, the Doc Ricketts collects detailed data and samplings for a variety of missions. Doc Ricketts is a Remote Operated Vehicle operated by the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute. Because the ROV's work is so precise, MBARI relies on the dependability of the mechanisms of the vehicle and its lubricants to meet the demands of subsea operations.

Marine grade lubricants used in subsea projects are required to be in compliance with US Fish and Game regulations, and must be supported with proper documentation. Not only was Royal Purple able to provide the necessary documentation for their marine grade lubricant, but they also offered readily available technical support which prompted MBARI to use Royal Purple exclusively in the Doc Ricketts.

MBARI currently uses Royal Purple's Syndraulic. Syndraulic is a clean, long life, energy efficient, minimum leak, hydraulic oil possessing exceptional film strength and wear protection properties. It greatly increases both the life of the oil and the seals, filters and pumps of hydraulic systems.Syndraulic can lower operating temperatures and restore normal operation to erratically operating hydraulic systems.

Using Royal Purple has also produced other positive results. the life of the hydraulic system components were extended two to three times in comparison to the results MBARI was receiving with their previous hydraulic oil. The old oil also required that the cylinders and seals were replaced annually.  Oil cleanliness also became an added feature of using Royal Purple, and has resulted in the same oil being used in electronic systems and writing harnesses to counter the pressure effects the system is exposed to at depths thousands of meters below.

Doc Ricketts can be seen frequently on the National Geographic and Discovery Channels and is operated from MBARI's SWATH research vessel, the R/V Western Flyer. These systems represent an important new asset to the ocean science community as the system provides an integrated unmanned submersible research platform with many powerful features including high resolution video cameras with zoom and pat/tilt and fiber optic telemetry. Other research teams at MBARI are now considering Royal Purple for their vehicles as well as the carrier ship, the R/W Western Flyer.

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