Aker Solutions – leading the way in subsea communications

Business brief:

Aker Solutions is a leading global provider of engineering and construction services.  With over 50 years’ experience of subsea manufacturing and installation, the company required cutting-edge embedded technology to help retain its position at the forefront of the oil and gas sector.  Given the harsh operating environments and challenges of subsea activity, Aker approached Abelon on the strength of its reliable remote embedded systems.

Abelon approach:

Reliability, safety and accuracy were of paramount importance to the Aker brief.  Abelon developed embedded firmware for Aker’s subsea oil field control products and topside control and monitoring applications which allow operatives to remotely interact with subsea equipment.  Core products included Optical and Electrical Ethernet Modems, Terminal Servers and Routers - used to deliver control information and provide monitoring facilities over long distance umbilical links.  All products are remotely firmware upgradeable.  Key characteristics include reliability, failover and failsafe in harsh environments and guaranteed response times in the event of safety critical shutdown.

Outcome:

Abelon exceeded expectations of the original brief and has enjoyed a successful partnership with Aker since 2005.  In that time, we have developed the entire platform from BSP, DSP, firmware including applications, routing, discovery messaging and management protocols.  Our subsea and topside commercially viable products have achieved Technology Readiness Level 9 (TRL9), the most mature product category.  We have also been awarded Class A Supplier – a rare achievement for a small company.  Abelon continues to develop new features and communications technologies to enhance Aker’s activities and we are currently developing the next generation of Subsea Electronic Modules, a major part of Aker’s new product platform.