The world’s first EX-rated inspection robot

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Magneto-EX, the world's first EX-rated inspection robot. Image Supplied.

The world’s first, fully designed approved ‘EX-rated’ robotic camera inspection device – Magneto-EX – was officially launched in Perth last week by Nexxis, a WA-based robotics firm.

Magneto-EX is a robot crawler which features a spider-like device and magnetic feet. It is the first system suitable for safe use in hazardous area inspections, hence the ‘EX’ rating. Despite there being many clear drivers for EX-rated robotic inspection systems, none have been developed up until now.

Magneto-EX robot in action. Image Supplied.

Jason De Silveira, Nexxis’ Managing Director, said Magneto-EX is a game changer not only for the oil and gas sector, but any industry where there is a need for hazardous, confined space inspections.

industrial worksites are dangerous places and confined spaces pose the biggest risk in terms of death or injury. Anything that can be done to keep humans out of these environments is a great step forward.

Until now, robotic inspections haven’t been possible in confined and hazardous spaces due to the risk of ignition. But Magneto-EX changes all that. With its design approved (and) EX-certification, our prototype can work safely and reliably in the most extreme conditions, alleviating the risk to human operators

Jason De Silveira, Nexxis Managing Director

Working in confined spaces is estimated to be 100 to 150 times more hazardous than operating on an open site. By their nature, confined spaces are not designed for people to work in with poor ventilation allowing for hazardous atmospheres to quickly develop. Magneto-EX is billed as a major step toward safer inspections in the most hazardous workspaces.

The Magneto-EX prototype. Image Supplied.

Professor Peter Klinken, WA Chief Scientist, believes companies like Nexxis are a “prime example of how innovative and technological expertise” can be found in startups and individuals in WA.

It’s fantastic to have a world leading robotics company based in WA and I look forward to seeing Magneto-EX make a real difference to safety levels in the resources sector and beyond.

Professor Peter Klinken, WA Chief Scientist
Magneto-EX robotics motherboard. Image Supplied.

Magneto-EX has been developed with the financial assistance and industry support of NERA (National Energy Resources Australia) as well as CSIRO’s Data61 and SixDe.

NERA’s CEO Miranda Taylor says it has been exciting to help Nexxis on their journey.

NERA’s support of Nexxis dates back to 2018 when they were a team of just eight and it’s been wonderful to have been able to provide that early support to them as they have grown. We’re so excited about the Magneto-EX project which we think can both help cut costs but more importantly save lives. 

Miranda Taylor, NERA CEO

NERA is an independent not for profit company funded through federal government grants and collaborative programs by state/territory governments, industry and the science and research community. NERA is working with Nexxis’ partners to catalyse low emissions and digital technologies to support Australia’s energy transition, and to grow innovative SMES and supply chains.

What’s next for Magneto-EX

The next immediate step for Nexxis is to partner with some early adopters in industry and trial and refine the device, leading to a commercially available version sometime next year.

According to a McKinsey Global Institute Report, it is estimated that between AUD$900 billion to $1.6 trillion in savings throughout the global economy can be unlocked by technology-driven changes by 2035 – an amount equivalent to the current GDP of Canada or Indonesia.