«LUNAR ROVER» – Robotic Tank Cleaning Unit

Innovative solution for cleaning oil storage tanks from oil products and sludge
«LUNAR ROVER» – Robotic Tank Cleaning Unit
Innovative solution for cleaning oil storage tanks from oil products and sludge
Lunar Rover

The design of our robot was inspired by the first self-propelled space vehicle, the Lunokhod. Our unit is similar to the space unit in terms of dimensions, wheel drive with caterpillar steering (all-wheel steering — without steering wheels), operation in exotic conditions, in complete isolation, and under control from a great distance. Like the Lunokhod, our robot has a frameless load-bearing structure and uses the chassis not to carry cargo but to move the working bodies on a responsible mission.
About the Unit
The Robotic Tank Cleaning Unit is a remotely controlled, explosion-protected, hydraulically driven, all-wheel drive chassis equipped with oil sludge washout and recovery systems. The oil products collected by the unit are pumped out of the tanks as a water emulsion by a sludge pump. The high-pressure technology allows both horizontal and vertical surfaces (up to 4 metres) to be quickly cleaned of oil sludge in a wide range of temperatures and viscosities.

Remote control is possible via pneumatic signals, while remote monitoring is possible via explosion-proof CCTV, even in total darkness.

The robot differs from its peers primarily in its capacity of up to 75 cubic metres of sludge per hour at a cleaning front of 1.2 metres and a distance of up to 200 metres from the Complex's base.
LUNAR ROVER Video
Bench testing
Demonstration
Gallery
Gallery
Photos
Parts
Operation
The Robotic Unit is delivered to the oil collection site in disassembled state. The distance from the base of the Complex to the Oil Storage Tanks is up to 200 m:

  • control — via 'pneumatic' tubes from the remote control;
  • the hydraulic fluid (high-pressure hot water) — through the HP line from the pump module;
  • vacuum — through a pipe from the outside vacuum module;
  • remote CCTV cameras on the Unit and on the wall or roof of the oil storage tanks — by cable.

The Unit is controlled by a remote control located at the base of the Complex.

  • The HP module is triggered, comprising a water heating unit and a vacuum module.
  • The wheel and auger drive is connected and the washout nozzles are switched on.
  • The operator, observing the signal from the video cameras located on the Unit and on the Oil Storage Tanks, controls the oil collection via the control panel. The flow of hydraulic fluid dilutes and liquefies the thick oil products to emulsion consistency, allowing them to be conveyed by a rotating rotor (auger) to the vacuum pump inlet and further transported through the hose to the collection tank.
Outline and assembly drawings
Operation, control and layout flowcharts
Benefits
Benefits
Explanation
A single HP water-hydraulic pump at the base station
  • A single HP pump for propulsion of the unit, and for washing out and collecting the sludge.
  • There is no need for either several round-trip hydraulic hoses or a hydraulic station.
  • Possibility to operate from a safe area due to the longer operating distance on HP water rather than on a more viscous oil.
Less water for the same cleaning capacity
  • Water pressure from 100 bar (from 10 MPa);
  • Water temperature from 65 °C.
Versatile platform for delivering high energy to ATEX Zone 0 — large dimensions and weight:

  • auger width 1150 mm;
  • track gauge 1050 mm;
  • full weight 540 kg.
  • Large cleaning capacity (up to 75 m3/h; competitors up to 15 m3/h).
  • High manoeuvrability — easy turns due to significant width of the unit.
  • Capability to use up to 1 MW HP pump (able to withstand reaction force of the water jet).
  • Capability of towing a vacuum hose of a larger diameter and range.
  • Allows mechanised stripping faster than manual stripping.
6×6 AWD
  • Greater efficiency and reliability than a tracked drive.
  • Easier to self-maintain by the operator.
Technical Data Sheet
Technical Data Sheet
Value
Parameter
Dimensions (L х W х H)
1500×1150×700 mm (every unit gets through Ø 600 mm manhole)
Full weight
540 kg (every unit can be moved manually by 2 persons)
Body and rotor material
Stainless steel, brass
Propeller, formula
Wheel (whole-rubber tyres), 6 х 6
Travel speed
Up to 1 km/h
Motion control
Pneumatic, from outside control unit
Hydraulic fluid (water) pressure and t
Over 100 bar (over 10 MPa), from 65 °C
Collection of diluted oil
Up to 75 m3/h using the vacuum pump and the pipeline
CCTV
A wired explosion-proof wide-angle camera is placed directly on the robotic unit.
An additional explosion-proof camera with a zoom lens can be placed near the manhole or on the roof of the oil storage tank to allow zoom in.

The cameras allow the image on the surveillance monitor without delay. Cable length (on the coil) is 150 m.
The image is transmitted via explosion-proof cable to a video recorder, to which a monitor is connected, divided into the required number of segments.
Articles and Publications
Articles and Publications
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Cleaning of oil storage tanks from oil sludge and other sediments.
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