How can AQUASIGN help cut costs for subsea developments?

Driving value in subsea developments

With oil prices plummeting, the cost of setting up and maintaining subsea oil and gas installations is coming in for some serious scrutiny.

Company execs in the industry are facing tough questions, including how to mitigate the high costs of subsea operations in the face of falling commodity costs.

Little wonder, then, that companies are re-examining their procurement process and regular suppliers – to see if there are ways to cut costs, lower the break-even point for developments, and improve value over the long-term.

In this article, we’ll look at some of the ways AQUASIGN can help businesses reduce costs and maximise value.


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Reduced maintenance costs

Traditional subsea signage can be obscured by biofouling within a matter of months, particularly in hot and humid climates. And while marine growth is slower in deeper waters, the problem still persists.

Signage needs to be cleared of biofouling on a regular basis in line with stringent safety legislation. And so companies with subsea assets effectively have two, both costly, options:

Option 1 – Buy a remote subsea cleaning solution (robot) 🤖

Companies may choose to invest in their own remote subsea cleaning solution. This will need to be designed and manufactured in line with their particular requirements by a specialist supplier, before being transported to a location near the asset/s it will be used on.

Companies will then be liable for maintenance and repair costs, plus staff training, and the expense of operational downtime while the robot is deployed.

Option 2 – Hire a company specialising in subsea cleaning ✨

Hiring a third-party to clean subsea installations comes with obvious costs of its own.

While the initial expense is lower than purchasing a solution, companies still have to pay per clean and incur the costs of suspending operations while cleaning takes place.

There is a more cost-effective alternative: Aquasign antifouling markers

An alternative to traditional subsea markers, our smart silicone antifouling markers remove costs associated with cleaning and maintenance.

With their unique surface tension technology and proprietary oil, these signs are guaranteed to remain unobscured by marine growth for 60 years.

They require no cleaning and no maintenance and have been installed all over the world in many applications.

How can AQUASIGN help cut costs for subsea developments - quote image SQ

Why should you choose Aquasign antifouling markers over other maintenance options?

Lower logistics costs

Aquasign has been developed with the cost of transportation in mind.

UV resistance

Aquasign’s standard specification is our UV-stable Solis, fade-proof even in direct sunlight for two years. Companies are free to install Aquasign markers on their assets prior to transport, safe in the knowledge that the high-contrast black and yellow markers won’t fade in the interim.

This enables companies to take advantage of slower, cheaper transport methods, and to store assets complete with markers until the volume of materials in need of transport makes this cost-effective.


Aquasign markers are an ideal choice for projects on a short lead-time. Our signage and fixings are completely non-toxic and lightweight, which means they can be transported by air freight without incurring any additional costs.

Biocidal alternatives may be limited to sea or land freight and may require costly licensing – an expense to be met by the company each time markers are transported.


Standardisation on a company-wide level has a lot going for it, including when it comes to procurement.

Staff charged with selecting suitable assets for a project are likely to need to identify, research and draw up comparative cost profiles for a number of items before a decision can be made at a managerial level as to which offers the best value.

By identifying a suitable product from the outset and standardising its inclusion in future projects, companies can save time, effort and ultimately money during the project planning stage – not just once, but every time.

The short version

Oil and gas companies are drilling ever deeper as demand for product grows and technology supports more extensive subsea operations. But the costs associated are driving firms to explore new ways to cut costs and increase value.

Aquasign antifouling markers can’t single-handedly solve the challenges faced by operators. But, our non-toxic signage, guaranteed to perform and stay put for 60 years, can contribute to company-wide policies of standardisation with the aim of minimising procurement expenses.

Contact a member of the team to discuss your deepwater signage needs, and we’ll be happy to talk it through.

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➡️ Related content: read up on our range of onshore marker fixing options or visit our Download Centre for access to all our test reports, specification documentation and product guides.

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