Robust control system for Saab Seaeye remotely operated vehicles

Saab Seaeye Limited was formed in 1986 by Ian and Janet Blamire to specialise in the manufacture of electrically powered remotely operated vehicles (ROV) for the offshore oil and gas industry.

To date, Saab Seaeye has delivered 500 ROV's and has become the benchmark by which all-electric powered ROVs are compared today.

The requirement

Saab Seaeye approached Amplicon with the requirement for a stable and repeatable control system for their new Cougar-XTi range of underwater ROV's.

The Saab Seaeye Cougar-XTi ROV is rated to 3000m depth, and is used to address the industry's need for a 3,000m observation ROV, capable of providing a "self-help" and light work capability.

ROV's are essential for the exploitation and development of deep-water oil and gas reserves - far beyond the reach of divers - but can also be useful in many other areas. Planning when to use an ROV is tough as a number of reasons can affect the timing; weather, distance and availability all have to be factored in. When clients get the opportunity to utilise an ROV they cannot afford faults or delays, therefore the system had to be extremely reliable as well as able to work in harsh environments.

The industrial computer system being used by Saab Seaeye at the time they contacted Amplicon was proving to be expensive and on a long lead time. Saab Seaeye needed a system that would reduce costs, improve the efficiency of their control systems and be delivered to reasonable timescales.

The solution

SAAB-Seaeye-control-system.jpg The Amplicon industrial computing team worked closely with the Saab Seaeye engineers to come up with the best solution for their requirement. The Amplicon Ventrix 2030 rackmount computer, one of Amplicon's most reliable systems was selected for its repeatability and long life cycle. Its robustness, SBC configuration, and road-mapped components met the stringent hardware requirements set by the customer.

Amplicon was also able to supply additional hardware that was required for the project this included a MAG35-01-1 Panel meter unit to be used for constant data updates. Designed to meet the industry-standard size 1/8 DIN, these low-cost digital panel meters have the functionality to integrate easily into any system.


The Ventrix 2030 industrial computer is now approved as the Saab Seaeye standard control system for their Cougar-XTi range of underwater ROV's. Saab Seaeye has been successfully using the Ventrix 2030 unit since 2011.

Amplicon industrial units provide our systems with a stable hardware platform suited to running embedded applications in a tough environment. The units are provided with additional hardware fitted to our requirements, making them ready to use straight from the supplier. Also Amplicon offers a minimum of 5 year product life and road mapped alternatives what makes maintaining our system design much more straight forward. In addition, the shorter lead times provided by Amplicon are essential for our customer support and ideal for quick to the market solutions.

Andy Withers, Engineering Support Supervisor - Saab Seaeye

Why Amplicon?

Amplicon has many years of experience supplying complex industrial computing systems to the Oil and Gas industry.

Amplicon manufactures its own range of industrial computers and offers a broad range of additional hardware to meet their customer system requirements. All Amplicon industrial computers are manufactured in the UK using road mapped components and offering a minimum of 5-year product life.