Product Spotlight: FLEXUS More than an ROTV
By Marine Technology Reporter
MacArtney introduced FLEXUS, a new data acquisition system. Based on a simple and rugged, yet flexible remotely operated towed vehicle, the FLEXUS composes a versatile and user friendly system suitable for a multitude of oceanographic, monitoring and survey applications.
Like the more advanced MacArtney TRIAXUS and FOCUS-2 ROTV systems, FLEXUS is based on a towed vehicle featuring a broad range of innovative features and benefits. The FLEXUS vehicle is suitable for several mission types including effective and detailed mapping of physical and chemical parameters in the water column. The vehicle can be controlled vertically with an operational envelope of 0-200 m and is able to operate at a tow speed of up to 10 knots and with a vertical speed of up to 1 m/s.
In addition, FLEXUS is able to carry out a broad variety of different scientific monitoring tasks and can be reconfigured for new applications. With regards to instrumentation, CTD packages, transmissometers, flourmeters and sensors for PAR, turbidity and dissolved oxygen are among the broad variety of oceanographic equipment mountable onboard the FLEXUS vehicle.
The system may also be equipped with traditional survey sensors including side scan sonars. The high level of flexibility offered by the FLEXUS vehicle is enabled by a powerful MacArtney NEXUS MK E electric multiplexer which comprises the heart and backbone of the FLEXUS system. By means of the NEXUS MK E multiplexer, the FLEXUS vehicle can be used with existing marine winch and cable solutions and coupled with the compact footprint of the vehicle itself, it is fully deployable from even small sized vessels of opportunity. Moreover, featuring multiple channels and connectivity options on the subsea multiplexer unit, the NEXUS MK E allows FLEXUS operators to combine systems and sensors in several ingenious ways to perform an extensive range of operations.
While the NEXUS MK E can be used onboard the FLEXUS vehicle, it can also be easily dismounted for use with other applications on other sensor and instrument carrying oceanographic platforms, including CTDs, landers, corers, drop camera systems and custom bottom tow sledges.
(As published in the April 2014 edition of Marine Technology Reporter - http://www.marinetechnologynews.com/Magazine)