Seafloor Drillscrd100recovery-1

Cellula seafloor drills are state of the art, self-contained, remotely operated geotechnical analysis tools that can drill, case, core, and provide real time Cone Penetrating Testing (CPT) data to 150m below the seabed in water depths down to 3000m.

Seafloor drills provide a major improvement in offshore drilling safety compared to surface vessels as all tool handling is carried out remotely with  no human intervention.  For more on the applications of seafloor drills, click here.

Cellula’s newest seafloor drill is the CRD100, which provides our customers with an unprecedented level of automation that facilities efficient core sampling and CPT measurements.


“Currently a high percentage of all reported major injuries offshore are associated with drilling operations. A remotely operated seabed drilling system would all but eliminate such exposure and hence the risks associated with such activities.
In addition, the remoteness of the vessel from the drilling system also reduces the risks associated with presence of shallow gas.”[1]


Cellula seafloor drills are sophisticated and highly automated. The drills are designed to handle changing conditions during a drilling campaign.  For example, if an unexpected hard feature is discovered during a geotechnical CPT profile, the drill can switch tools, core through the feature and continue the CPT profile.

With the seafloor drill deployed directly onto the seabed, precise (<1”) downhole depth measurements can be made with respect to the mudline.   Coupled with a precision digi-quartz depth sensor, CPT data can be accurately tied to existing data sets.  All this measurement data is transmitted to the surface in real time.


Cellula seafloor drills include attitude sensors, maneuvering thrusters, navigation sensors and a suite of cameras which allow the surface operator to accuracy position the drill, even in the most challenging terrain.  Hydraulically actuated legs enable the drill to be leveled on slopes up to 30°. For more information on seafloor drill components, click here.

The integral maneuvering capability enables adjacent bore holes to be drilled.   Accurate drill placement and depth knowledge allows CPT and sample depths to be precisely aligned.


“A comparison of the production rates from Luva with a nearby site where surface drilling techniques were utilised revealed that seabed drilling technology is potentially 3-5 times more efficient than surface drilling in 1,300m water depth and soft soil conditions.”[1]

[1] Yetginer, A.G. and Tjelta, T.I. 2011. Seabed Drilling vs. Surface Drilling – A comparison. Frontiers in Offshore Geotechnics II – Gourvenec & White (eds). 2011 Taylor & Francis Group, London, ISBN 978-0-415-58480-7.