Phillips 66 and Square Robot Team Up to Develop Storage Tank Inspection Robot

Autonomous robot would enable petroleum storage tanks to remain in service for tank floor inspections

October 19, 2017 10:00 AM Eastern Daylight TimeBOSTON & HOUSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Phillips 66 (NYSE: PSX), an energy manufacturing and logistics company, and Square Robot, Inc. are advancing into the unmanned robotics inspection market through the joint development of an autonomous robot that would have the capability to inspect petroleum product storage tank floors while product remains in the tank. The untethered robot is being designed and will be certified for use in a wide range of petroleum products. The robot is expected to enter service in mid-2018.

“As a start-up, we would not have access to these tremendous resources outside of our core business of developing autonomous robots for confined spaces.”

Aboveground storage tanks are routinely removed from service to be drained, opened and cleaned at great expense in order to evaluate tank bottoms. The new robot is being developed to automatically survey and map obstacles within a tank -- while the tank remains in static service -- creating a specific route map allowing maximum coverage of the tank floor. Using the non-destructive testing (NDT) data gathered, a certified inspector will produce a floor thickness map allowing for a more accurate prediction of a tank floor’s remaining life.

“Our collaboration with Phillips 66 provides access to a significant team of experts in NDT inspection, safety, procedures and operations,” said Eric Levitt, Square Robot co-founder. “As a start-up, we would not have access to these tremendous resources outside of our core business of developing autonomous robots for confined spaces.”

“Ensuring the integrity of our equipment is one of our top priorities and we are always looking for innovative new technologies to help us achieve this,” said Todd Denton, general manager, Midstream Operations, Phillips 66. “Our collaboration with Square Robot presents a unique opportunity to develop technology that will enable us to maintain our equipment and minimize disruption to our customers.”

About Square Robot, Inc.

Square Robot was started by three Subsea Robotics professionals in May 2016, specifically to address the growing need for swimming autonomous robots for Oil and Gas applications. Aside from terrestrial tanks, the same autonomous hovering technology will have broad ranging applications for subsea infrastructure inspection. The rapidly growing Boston based start-up has recently completed a first round of fundraising and currently employs 12 engineers. The company intends to launch a tank floor inspection service business in Houston during the summer of 2018.

About Phillips 66

Phillips 66 is a diversified energy manufacturing and logistics company. With a portfolio of Midstream, Chemicals, Refining, and Marketing and Specialties businesses, the company processes, transports, stores and markets fuels and products globally. Phillips 66 Partners, the company’s master limited partnership, is an integral asset in the portfolio. Headquartered in Houston, the company has 14,600 employees committed to safety and operating excellence. Phillips 66 had $52 billion of assets as of June 30, 2017. For more information, visit or follow us on Twitter @Phillips66Co.


This news release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, which are intended to be covered by the safe harbors created thereby. Statements in this press release that are not purely historical are forward-looking statements. These statements are not guarantees of future performance or outcomes and involve certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are difficult to predict. Therefore, actual outcomes and results may differ materially from what is expressed or forecast in such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements herein include statements regarding Square Robot’s efforts to develop and commercialize the technology with the capabilities, and Phillips 66’s ability to use the technology, as described in this press release. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include, but are not limited to, technical or legal issues that may arise in the development, protection or commercialization of the technology, as well as the possible introduction by others of competitive technology. These factors could, among other things, delay or prevent the development of the technology and Phillips 66’s expected benefits therefrom. The forward-looking statements contained herein are made only as of the date of this press release and neither Square Robot nor Phillips 66 undertake any obligation to publicly update such forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.

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Square Robot

Eric Levitt

617-274-8389 ext. 7801

Phillips 66

Jeff Dietert, 832-765-2297 (investors)


Rosy Zuklic, 832-765-2297 (investors)


C.W. Mallon, 832-765-2297 (investors)


Dennis Nuss, 832-765-1850 (media)