The Project


We were asked to undertake a large scale storage tank clean at a major sugar beet processing plant in the UK. This would involve removing all silt and surface residues of heavy oil from a storage tank to make good for use with sugar beet production.

The Solution


A&A commissioned the Robot Tank Cleaner to clean the walls of the 6000 tonne heavy fuel oil storage tank. This was part of a 3-phase operation to bring the HFO tank to food grade storage specification for the client.

All fuel oil was removed including heavy silts that had built up on the tank floor using conventional tank cleaning methods and coils removed. The fully air-operated robot cleaner was then used to de-grease the storage tank walls and clean the entire wall surfaces with the rapid spinning heads of the unit. Pressure was set slightly under the maximum of 42,000 psi as the storage tank had rust , oil and scale residues that needed removing prior to final surface preparation for use in food processing at the clients plant.

A crew of 4 managed to undertake this work successfully within 6 weeks at the clients site without the need for scaffolding erection/dismantle or working at height operatives. The Robot Tank Cleaner features two pneumatically actuated drive modules, which ensures high mobility and maneuverability thanks to rubber covered tracks. A strong and safe adhesion to almost all steel surfaces is guaranteed by a package of 8 permanent magnets which are installed on either side of the tracks.

We find the Robot Tank Cleaner highly cost-effective in comparison to manual tank cleaning with less asset downtime. The unit can cover up to 40m2 in an hour and fewer numbers in crews needed.

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The Outcome


In May 2011, the works were successfully completed to the full satisfaction of our client.