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Environmental rescue beneath the waves

A specialized pumping system from Framo is tackling the ecological threat posed by wrecked wartime vessels.

DATE 2016-04-19 AUTHOR AMY JOHANSSON PHOTO GETTY

The sunken Second World War ships lying in their watery graves off Norway’s coast carry a cargo that still poses a major environmental hazard, seven decades after they sank beneath the waves. Their fuel oil is highly dangerous to local marine life as it leaks from the corroding vessels, but marine ecologists and coastal authorities have so far been unable to make this toxic cargo safe.  

But now Framo has developed a specialized pumping system that safely and remotely removes these hazardous chemicals, without the need for putting divers at risk in the cold, deep and treacherous waters. The company, which is now part of the Alfa Laval Group, has successfully carried out 16 operations, with five additional successful operations conducted with the latest generation ROLS X.0 system. 

FOUNDED: 1938
WORLDWIDE LOCATIONS: Bergen, Busan, Shanghai, Tokyo, service sites in Singapore, Rotterdam, Houston, Dubai, Luanda, Mexico City and Rio de Janeiro
HEADQUARTERS: Bergen, Norway MARINE & OFFSHORE
SYSTEMS AVAILABLE: Cargo pumping systems, fire water systems, seawater lift pumps, water injection pumps, cavern pumps, oil recovery systems (Transrec), emergency offloading equipment, and special equipment for offshore applications.

How Framo's Remote Offloading of Sunken vessels (ROLS) system works:

  • A slim, manoeuvrable robot component is navigated down to the wreck.
  • The robot drills through the side of the vessel and empties the tanks of the hazardous fuel oil.
  • Pumps separate the oil, and the waste is then disposed of onshore according to regulations.
We can never completely safeguard ourselves from oil spills, but with our innovative solutions and continuous refining of our products, Framo has proven to be prepared for any challenge.”

TERJE LJONES, SALES MGR.,
OIL RECOVERY SYSTEMS AT FRAMO.

Framo systems are sold and serviced by Framo only.