Seabed Clearance Services

Our Seabed Clearance Services offer a flexible approach for preparing your project for foundation and cable installation. We offer boulder and debris picking by grab, dense boulder field solutions by plough, and UXO identification and disposal using innovative proven subsea technologies. Our services have evolved through project experience, lessons learned, and continuous improvement into a market-leading solution that suits your exacting requirements.

Exclusive benefits:

  • Tooling combinations to optimize clearance rates equaling less vessel time and cost
  • Plough performance 4X faster than conventional grab in dense boulder fields
  • Industry leading assets and unparalleled project experience list
  • Cable route corridors cleared efficiently for chosen trenching assets
  • High resolution survey data provides confidence to cable lay installers pre-lay
  • Schedule and cost effective full site clearance at foundation locations offers full life of field access for any jack-up during O&M
  • Accept soils risk – Step change in trenching contracting
  • Quantify burial performance pre-lay by removing soils risk upfront
  • Industry leading solutions for UXO identification and disposal from our fleet of ROVs and ROV-mounted subsea dredging equipment and tooling
  • High speed, high current-capable shallow water work class ROVs

We offer a flexible Seabed Clearance package based on your requirements. Our offering spans from individual assets for specific route clearance and UXO requirements to a comprehensive optimized solution combining our assets to offer a turnkey service for interconnector or wind farm projects.

Route Preparation

Our Seabed Clearance System performs route preparation and clearance for pipe and cable lay installations

Even our Plough is Smart

From soft to hard soils, dense or sporadic boulder distribution, our tooling is ideal. The Seabed Clearance System continues to evolve with the addition of cutting-edge subsea positioning equipment, plough performance feedback instrumentation, and software tools that increase route clearance efficiency.

With over 3,000 mi (5000 km) of boulder clearance and trenching expertise, our Seabed Clearance System is ideal for dense boulder fields. Our setup lowers project cost, minimizes seabed disturbance, and is deployed for significantly less time than a conventional boulder grab. For scattered boulder distributions or large boulders from berms, our intelligent boulder grab is quickly deployed to keep your project on track.

  • Over 6.2 mi/day (10 km/day) @ 32.8 ft (10 m) wide
  • Boulders up to 6.5 ft (2 m)
  • No downtime
  • Wide corridor width (multi-pass solution)

Pre-Cut Trenching Services

Our SCAR trenching tool is the only pre-cut plough on the market that achieves target trench depth in a single pass. Pre-cut trenching enables repeatable, guaranteed depth of burial in arduous soils and eliminates the risk of in-trench boulders. SCAR provisions for increased cable lay tension that increases the vessel lay speed and reduces project cost. Our pre-cut process enables continuous product lay on schedule [over 1,312 ft/hr (400 m/hr)], reducing your project risk and providing certainty in depth of burial.

  • Overcutting the trench allows for trench infill prior to product lay
  • 4X faster than mechanical cutters
  • Removes trenching from the critical path


In backfill mode, the SCAR system ensures cable protection with indigenous seabed material by returning soil to the trench that was displaced during pre-cut trenching operations, leaving the seabed in near original condition and eliminating the potential of net-cable interaction during trawling activities. The SCAR Backfill Plough eliminates interaction with a cable during operations, eliminating the risk of cable damage when compared to Simultaneous Lay and Burial (SLB) solutions.

Backfill progresses at approximately 1,312 ft/hr (400 m/hr) and, when combined with the pre-cut plough, offers a cost-effective solution for arduous soils. The backfill plough is in a continuous improvement program and was upgraded with subsea positioning, plough performance instrumentation, and visual feedback to improve plough performance.

REN Scar Seabed System Backlifting 1
Contact Us | Seabed Clearance Services

Company page Since our founding in the early 1960s, Oceaneering has expanded and grown globally to service several industries such as the offshore energy industry, defense, entertainment, material handling, aerospace, science, and renewable energy industries. In 1964, Mike Hughes and Johnny Johnson formed a Gulf of Mexico diving company called World Wide Divers. The company grew in response to increasing demand for their services and in 1969 merged with two other diving companies to form Oceaneering International, Inc. To solve the toughest challenges, we do things differently, creatively, and smarter. As your trusted partner, our unmatched experience and truly innovative portfolio of technologies and solutions give us the flexibility to adapt and evolve, regardless of market conditions. Our mission is to solve the unsolvable. We thrive by creating industry-changing technically creative solutions for the most complex operational challenges under water, on land, and in space. Our five core values establish a common culture and demonstrate what is most important for us as a company. Since the beginning, the company has transformed from a small regional diving company into a global provider of engineered products and services. Today, we develop products and services for use throughout the lifecycle of an offshore oilfield, from drilling to decommissioning. We operate the world's premier fleet of work class ROVs. Additionally, we are a leader in offshore oilfield maintenance services, umbilicals, subsea hardware, and tooling. We also serve the aerospace, defense, and theme park industries. Underpinning everything we do, safety is not only the foundation of our core values, but it is vital to our unmatched performance record and company culture. The industries we serve are as diverse as they are complex. Whether we are engineering deepwater umbilicals or developing robotics for aerospace applications, the safety and health of our employees, vendors, and customers is an integral part of our day-to-day business. If we are working, then our responsibility is to be working safely. Since our inception in 1964, we have placed a high value on employee safety—from diving services and subsea inspection to vessel-based installation operations. We have and will continue to evolve not only our health, safety, and environmental (HSE) processes, but those of the industries in which we work. Although we have been fatality-free since 1999, our HSE journey goes beyond statistics. As our portfolio of services has grown, we have continued to prioritize and advance our approach to HSE.