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Imagery in hazardous conditions

05 November 2009

Whessoe Total Automation is a leading force in marine instrumentation with over 35 years experience in Cargo Level Gauging Systems and associated automated systems. The prime activity of the organisation is marine gauging sales, marketing, systems solutions, spares provision, repairs and after sales service worldwide.
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Digital imagery in hazardous conditions
Digital imagery in hazardous conditions

As a Worldwide supplier to marine and offshore industries, Whessoe understand the needs of its customers and the surroundings they operate in.

“The equipment Whessoe Total Automation provide is engineered to operate in the harshest weather, temperature and atmospheric environments,” explained Chris Mais, managing director “we strive to provide products and service that will stand the test of time.”

Key to Whessoes continued success is providing after sales advice and service to its customers. With mobile service teams operating across the globe, Whessoe can react to customer requirements quickly and efficiently.
However, solutions and upgrade options are often difficult to document with in explosive areas, leaving reports open to interpretation, especially with respect to location within miles of pipleline, sometime hundreds of miles offshore, day or night.

Clearly, the need for a means of recording still and moving images in a hazardous area would help. In todays’ cost conscious environment, the quality of product and reliability of plant is paramount to the success of any company.
Due to the ever increasing demands for after sales service information and feedback to clients, Whessoe concluded that a reliable and robust solution to providing digital imagery in hazardous conditions was a necessary addition.  Whessoe decided to research the market for an ATEX certified digital camera. 

Whessoe highlighted two important features for any camera to be considered; (1) a high resolution image detector, preferably 5 mega pixels and (2) an LCD screen to review images in the field. Trips to marine vessels and offshore oil platforms can cost thousands of pounds per visit. Poor resolution or out of focus images could render a survey invalid or result in incorrect equipment being taken out of service. Taking all factors into consideration, Whessoe selected the Centurion XPG series explosion proof digital cameras as standard equipment for service engineers.  Manufactured by Cordex Instruments Ltd., the Centurion XPG series camera provided a safe and fast solution to recording equipment condition and operation in Zone 1 IIC T4 atmospheres. 

Whilst similar products were reviewed the XPG offered the distinct advantage of IP54 ratings making it suitable for use in adverse weather conditions common with the marine and offshore environment we work in.  The product was selected on basis of its specification over rival products and its very ability to not only capture still images but to also capture moving images within explosive atmospheres. 

The portability of the product was also a key factor in the decision making process. This, coupled with higher image resolution then competitor products, a removable battery with recharging facility and an onboard strobe flash combined to make Centurion XPG the only choice.

“We are extremely pleased with our decision to select Centurion XPG” concluded Mais, “the camera is reliable, portable and provides the image quality we required at a price that was right.”

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