Transferring personnel offshore made a major advance in 2014 with the launch of a brand new range of crane transfer devices; the FROG-XT.
The range was developed by Reflex Marine, a global leader in safe marine transfer solutions to the offshore oil, gas and renewable industries. The FROG-XT has been designed to offer operators eXTreme performance and safety as well as an advanced ownership experience.
The FROG-XT is an evolution of the popular FROG range and captures more than 20 years of vast learning and experience including the incorporation of client feedback into the product design. The capacity of the devices has been increased to include four, six and 10 person versions. The average passenger weight capability has also been increased.
Design improvements include more advanced levels of passenger protection as well as the ability to operate within wider operating parameters. The seating positions have been modified to allow a more upright ‘semi seated’ positioning which personnel in some regions are more comfortable with. All devices can be quickly and easily converted to MedEvac mode to allow the safe transfer of sick or injured personnel.
Since the FROG-XT range was officially launched in 2014, more than 40 units have been sold all around the world including major operators in the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Europe. Feedback from clients has been extremely positive with a focus on the many design improvements that have been made to the devices both from an enhanced safety and performance perspective.
The first FROG-XT was sold to Total E&P in Nigeria to be used on the newly developed Odudu Field. The French operator purchased the crew transfer device primarily for carrying out inter-field transfers. They have already found the device to be an invaluable back-up method for when adverse weather conditions result in helicopters being unable to fly.
Feedback from Total highlights the devices advancements on Reflex Marine’s original FROG-3, previously supplied by the crew transfer company. The FROG-XT4 was developed in line with the industry’s continued drive to improve the safety of its operations - a vision which Reflex Marine shares.
The deck foreman at Total E&P Nigeria said:
“The FROG-XT4 is very portable and easy to transfer from starboard to port, and vice versa. In case of impact, it has better personnel protection with improved shielding compared to that of the FROG-3, previously used by Total. Another improvement would be the FROG-XT4’s shock absorbers.”
Total’s crane operator added:
“The FROG-XT4 has a very small footprint and can fit on tight deck space compared to the previous model.”
With oil prices dropping, operators will be looking at the most cost efficient way to transfer personnel offshore. Marine transfer can offer a cost effective and safe alternative to helicopters and walk to work systems.
With several cheaper alternative products on the market such as the rigid basket, it has often been the misconception that the FROG is a more expensive option. However, when taking into account the cost of the product over its lifecycle, the FROG-XT works out as more cost effective than the rigid basket. This is mainly due to the longer product lifespan but also the range has made it cheaper to transport as well as to inspect and maintain.
As well as being a cost effective option, the FROG-XT offers operators unrivalled safety and premium quality. It is also the only device to offer protection against the four major risks of crane transfer; immersion, hard landings and vertical and lateral impacts.
Reflex Marine has a busy year ahead, demonstrating the new range at a variety of events around the word including the North Sea Offshore Crane and Lifting Conference in April and Offshore Europe in September.
If you would like to find out more about Reflex Marine and the FROG-XT range please visit http://www.reflexmarine.com.