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​​inRobotics Inc: In-Tank Robotic Inspection Technology 


inRobotics is a proud participant of the SPRINT Robotics Collaborative  


Nick Tillmann

inRobotics Inc

Houston, Texas,  USA

​+1 832 748-1900 

​​​​inRobotics is focused on the development of novel technology to enable widespread use of robotics for inspection of above ground storage tanks while in service to address a major industry objective to eliminate human entry to hazardous, confined spaces.  The technology is based on an onboard, in-tank localization system combined with unlimited, six degrees of freedom maneuverability that will allow precise correlation of data with location (data stamping), improving accuracy and data analytics capabilities. The key features and benefits of the technology include the following:

  • An advanced propulsion system will six degrees of freedom maneuverability will allow precise control, which will enable the robot to maneuver around appurtenances (piping, sumps etc.) and inspect the entire tank including walls, roof support structures and seals, significantly reducing the need to take tanks out of service.
  • A proprietary in-tank localization system with precise real time location accuracy and the capability to link sensor data with location (data stamping), will provide detailed analysis and automated reporting of tank condition, avoiding time-consuming and often inaccurate manual analysis.
  • An early commercial application of the technology will be the use of the localization system for out-of-service storage tank inspections.  The localization technology will substantially increase the accuracy out-of-service inspections and enable remote offline inspection, reducing confined space entry human entry.   Current processes for mapping data to floor location are manual and imprecise.  Tank floors can consist of over 100 welded floor plates, which are scanned and mapped individually.  By stamping scanner data to precise floor location throughout the tank, the technology will enable accurate data analytics and the use of risk based inspection techniques to improve maintenance planning and increase intervals between inspections.
  • The localization system will allow detection and location of leaks, which is often difficult or impossible with out-of-service inspection techniques. 
  • The robot has been designed for explosion proof certification (Class 1 Division 1 / ATEX), which will make it suitable for use in a wide range of liquids, including gasoline and other volatile liquids.
  • The technology will enable the future development of online cleaning and repair capabilities as well as fully autonomous swimming inspection and utility robots for use in a wide variety of liquids, tanks, ballast tanks and vessels, as well as subsea applications requiring precise control and maneuverability.