Texas Patent of the Month – October 2022

Safe Marine Transfer, LLC (SMT) was founded in 2012 with a focus on safe subsea chemical injection to economically extend deepwater subsea tiebacks. Through extensive R&D, the company has expanded their mission to improve subsea production and pipeline flow technologies. In line with this mission, they have patented their design for a subsea smart electronic control unit.

Subsea technologies require specialized designs, and are often both complex and expensive to deploy, maintain, and repair. Safe Marine Transfer’s design tackles these limitations, creating an easier-to-produce subsea control unit without compromising any functionality. The control unit is equipped with a smart battery and charger system which allows for control over various subsea processes using a wireless link. The unit is also designed with a springless, pressure compensation to maintain functionality at a depth of 10,000 feet.

The design uses a series of actuating valves and gates to operate, ensuring no hydraulic power unit is required. The hydraulic system is a key contributor to the complexity of most subsea technologies. This alternative, non-hydraulic design ensures the control unit is much more simple to produce.

The unit uses control loops to support the subsea processing. One such loop is a level controller which acts as surge control for the compressor. The control loops are informed using external sensors, which the smart processor analyzes for real-time feedback. These control units are designed especially for Safe Marine Transfer’s drag reducing agents (DRA) injection units.

Are you developing new technology for an existing application? Did you know your development work could be eligible for the R&D Tax Credit and you can receive up to 14% back on your expenses? Even if your development isn’t successful your work may still qualify for R&D credits (i.e. you don’t need to have a patent to qualify). To find out more, please contact a Swanson Reed R&D Specialist today or check out our free online eligibility test.

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