Sensors News

Deploying the Kraken Katfish.

Offshore Survey Vessels: Ready for Faster Sensors

without risk to humans and with less margin for human error. Fast forward 10 years, now in the role as CEO of LeeWay Marine, I am again evaluating robots, but from the perspective of finding a commercial solution that offers a competitive edge.LeeWay owns and operates survey vessels from the Center for Ocean Ventures and Entrepreneurship (COVE) in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada. COVE is one of several ocean technology hubs in Atlantic Canada (Canada’s four eastern-most provinces including Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick) and, therefore, we are immersed

iXblue’s hydrographic research vessel FeliX (Photo: iXblue)

iXblue Wins OWF Survey in France

from Belle-Île. These turbines, with a unit capacity of 6 megawatts (MW).Each 180-meter-tall wind turbine has three 75-meter blades, capturing the force of the wind on a surface of 17,000 square meters. The floats on which the wind turbines are installed are specifically designed to adapt to the oceanic conditions of the Groix & Belle-Île site.The wind farm is slated to be commissioned in 2021

Photo: Kraken Robotics

Kraken Tallies $2.1 Million KATFISH Order

by the U.S. Navy to see the future of naval technology in action today.Karl Kenny, Kraken’s President and CEO, said, “Seafloor mapping is one of the oldest professions known to humankind. For thousands of years, mariners have been measuring the seabed under their vessels. Today’s ocean surveying market is valued at over US$3 billion per year. Kraken’s customers have requested a high speed, ultra-high resolution seabed mapping solution that leverages our sensor and robotics technology. With KATFISH, surveyors can now increase the quantity of seafloor data, significantly improve

Thyssenkrupp’s MUM concept. Image from Thyssenkrupp.

Robotics: The Next Gen in Subsea Vehicles

are inspiring a new generation of underwater systems and vehicles. Elaine Maslin takes a look.The list of applicants to enter the underwater domain is growing fast. The concepts vary, from underwater autonomous motherships able to carry an array of payloads over long distances to swarms of drop deployed ocean bottom nodes that can find their way to pre-programmed locations.At energy:connected, as the Oslo-based Subsea Valley cluster and annual conference is now called, some of these concepts were outlined, including those from two Norwegian technology firms and Germany’s Thyssenkrupp, a firm more

Weddell Sea polynya, initally 3,700 square miles, 2017. False color NASA satellite image shows ice in blue, clouds in white. (Photo: Scripps Institution of Oceanography)

Robotic Data Help Explain Mysterious Holes

The winter ice on the surface of Antarctica's Weddell Sea occasionally develops an enormous hole. In 2016 and 2017, one such hole drew intense curiosity from scientists and the media.Though bigger gaps had formed decades before, this was the first time oceanographers had a chance to truly monitor the unexpected gap in Antarctic winter sea ice. It was an opportunity that came about as a result of uncanny timing and a seasoned oceanographer’s knowledge of the sea.A new study co-authored by researchers from Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego combines

(File photo: Kraken Robotics)

Kraken Sets Up Unmanned Vehicles Facility

Robotics Inc. subsidiary, Kraken Robotic Systems Inc. said it has established a new facility in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia to field test and support its range of underwater robotic platforms and technologies.The new 4,000-square-foot Unmanned Maritime Vehicles Facility (UMVF) is located at the Center for Ocean Ventures and Entrepreneurship (COVE), a marine technologies innovation hub.Kraken said its Handling Systems Group has already moved into the new location and will continue to build the firm’s Tentacle Winch and Autonomous Launch and Recovery Systems there. The facility will also be used to

Photo: Silicon Sensing Systems Ltd

Silicon Sensing Expands MEMS Foundry in Japan

Silicon Sensing Systems is to expand its MEMS foundry in Japan, moving into a new purpose-built facility, allowing the company to meet significantly increased demand for its MEMS inertial sensors and sputtered thin film PZT MEMS device wafers.The new facility will increase floorspace to 3,000m2, immediately more than doubling current wafer throughput and delivering scope for a five-fold increase in output over the next five years, in line with current market growth predictions.  To keep up with the volume and price pressures in the thin film PZT MEMS sector Silicon Sensing is already expanding

(Photo: Riptide)

BAE Systems Acquires Riptide

BAE Systems, Inc. has announced the purchase of the key assets of Riptide Autonomous Solutions, a Plymouth, Mass.-based provider of unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) technology and solutions.Specializing in small UUVs, Riptide’s platforms are deigned to be sophisticated yet simple, efficient and highly flexible, offering performance discriminators within this domain that include greater depth, range, endurance and speed.“Adding Riptide's technological capabilities will position us to provide customers unmatched flexibility by offeringa family of UUVs and integrated payload solutionscapab

(Photo: GEBCO-NF Alumni)

Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE Winner Annouced

The GEBCO NF- Alumni Team was announced as the $4 million grand prize winner of the Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE, a three-year global competition that challenged teams to advance deep sea technologies for autonomous and unmanned, fast and high-resolution ocean exploration. The team's winning concept includes the use of a unique unmanned surface vessel (USV) / autonomous underwater vessel (AUV) and associated combination of communications hardware and software to process and transmit data remotely. The SEA-KIT USV, Maxlimer, built by Hushcraft in the UK, has a unique ability to launch and

WFS Technologies’ Riser Monitoring system (Image: WFS Technologies)

WFS Unveils Riser Monitoring System

New solutions unveiled Thursday by WFS Technologies aim to tackle the real-time monitoring of offshore risers both above and below surface, on fixed structures including jackets and braces.The new Seatooth Assure Riser Monitor products allow for the measurement of 9-axis motion (vibration, orientation), local analytics and the reporting of real-time information through the water-air boundary with WFS’ patented Seatooth technology; a first of its kind for the industry, the Scotland-based subsea technology company said.Seatooth communicates through the water-air boundary removing the need for

Photo courtesy of Nortek

Nortek Opens Australian Office

extend its reach throughout Australia and New Zealand, an area that has been important for the company since it was founded over two decades ago.The team currently consists of Yarran Crichton and Harry Hughes: Yarran Crichton, Director of Nortek Australia, has many years’ experience of working with oceanographic equipment, collaborating closely with Nortek on product deployment and development. He has proven to be a valuable asset with a strong technical knowledge, offering high-level advice from a technical sales and support perspective.Harry Hughes, Sales Engineer, recently joined the team and

Image: ABB

Remote-Controlled Submersible Fish Farm in Arctic Ocean

Digital technology leader ABB has won a contract from Arctic Offshore Farming to power its first-ever remote controlled submersible offshore salmon farm in the Arctic Ocean.ABB will provide a comprehensive package of its leading electrical, automation, instrumentation and telecom technologies that ensure maximum efficiency and minimal environmental impact.With the global market volume of salmon expected to hit 4.5 million tons by 2023, according to a 2018 report by Research and Markets, the Arctic Offshore Farming project is looking for ways to farm fish in a more sustainable manner.The submerged fish

Figure 6: A DOLPHIN Sonar trial result, SAS at three times Nyquist speed. Image: QinetiQ North America

DOLPHIN: Enabling Technology for Acoustic Systems

, the state of the art technology has been limited to half-duplex signals: transmit with the receiver off and then turn the transmitter off and receiver on and wait to receive, because the direct transmission at the source saturates the receiver electronics if they are enabled simultaneously.  Ocean physics are fixed, but DOLPHIN technology enables true full-duplex acoustic telemetry.  It cancels the transmit signal at the receiver in real-time.  This eliminates receiver self-signal saturation and enables simultaneous transmitting and receiving on the same frequency, with collocated

DOF vessels Skandi Vega and Skandi Iceman involved in offshore operations (Photo courtesy of Equinor, by Espen Roennevik, Roar Lindefjeld)

Partners Set Out to Cut Offshore Emissions

Norwegian partners Kongsberg Maritime, DOF, SINTEF Ocean and NORCE have set out to reduce fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions for complex offshore operations, while streamlining fleet-wide maintenance.Enabled through sponsorship and support from Innovation Norway, the partnership will develop a sophisticated new Decision Support System (DSS) for offshore vessel operations. This new predictive, intelligent, and dynamic guidance tool will act as the foundation for DOF to simplify operational complexity with objective measurement, ultimately enabling optimal utilization and more sustainable

Photo: RTsys/French Navy

French Frigate Sonars Get an Upgrade

Since summer 2017, four vessels equipped with analog sonars have been upgraded using RTsys AS3i technology (Analog Surface Ship Sonar Improvement), which digitalized and improved the processing of signals rendered by sensors.Brittany-based company RTSYS does not only deals with AUV, subsea recorders and buoys, but can also display a full range of sonar systems such as handheld devices for divers or sonar retrofit. The latter of which led the French SME to lately offer in summer 2017 its services to the French Navy by upgrading analogue sonars on four frigates.In accordance with the ACORES public

Sonarydne’s BlueComm depressor in the water at Aldabra, during the Nekton First Descent mission. Photo: Nekton Oxford Deep Ocean Research Institute

Unheard Underwater: Covert Communications

Technology that has helped to achieve world firsts in ocean exploration broadcasting could also provide the answer for covert operations in the defense realm, where communications need to go unheard. Traditionally, wireless subsea communications use acoustic signals. Sound is practical, because it travels further through water than electromagnetic waves. Using sound, information can be shared over many km. Unfortunately, it is also relatively easy to hear those sounds and target the source using passive sensors; including when beyond the actual range at which the signals are effective. For

Logo: WFS

WFS Launches Subsea Wireless Edge Network

WFS Technologies Limited (WFS) unveiled  what it claims is the world’s first subsea wireless edge network for real-time monitoring of subsea assets.ExtremeEdge was developed to process and analyze the raw data at the sensor level, thus reducing information overheads by transmitting only the data needed to downstream solutions in real-time rather than all sensor data collected.In addition, by deploying a number of ExtremeEdge-enabled sensors, WFS has created the first subsea network designed to operate wirelessly. Traditionally, most solutions operate by individual sensor only, and not as a

Oceaneering’s Freedom vehicle (Image: Oceaneering)

Sonardyne Equips Latest Oceaneering Vehicles

Sonardyne announced Tuesday it has received an order from Oceaneering International to provide hybrid navigation systems for its subsea resident vehicles Freedom and E-ROV.  The two resident vehicle systems are to be fitted with Sonardyne’s SPRINT-Nav an all-in-one navigational instrument. SPRINT-Nav combines a SPRINT INS sensor, Syrinx 600 kHz DVL (Doppler velocity log) and a high accuracy intelligent pressure sensor in a single unit, Sonardyne said.Oceaneering’s E-ROV has already proven the ability for battery powered remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) working in the oil and gas

Pic: DNV GL

DNVGL: New Mooring Line Solution for Offshore Ops

DNV GL has developed a solution that is designed to reduce the risk of offshore floating vessel mooring line failure going undetected by replacing physical sensors with a machine learning algorithm that accurately predicts line failure in real time.The Norwegean company's Smart Mooring solution addresses growing industry concern about the high frequency of mooring line failure, and a vessel’s subsequent loss of station. Over the past two decades, more than 20 incidents have been reported globally involving failure of permanent mooring systems on floating structures.In the most severe cases

Modus Seabed Intervention's Sabertooth HAUV

Modus Acquires Second Sabertooth HAUV

UK-based underwater vehicle services company Modus Seabed Intervention has agreed with Saab Seaeye to buy its second Sabertooth hybrid autonomous underwater vehicle (HAUV).The 3,000-meter rated Sabertooth will be equipped with extended autonomous endurance and increased thrust for high speed survey and ready for the integration of advanced and high-resolution sensors for different types of applications and operations.Modus has been increasing the capability of its HAUV fleet and, following trials in 2017, its existing HAUV was ready for commercial operations in 2018. Trials included launching the HAUV

Photo: Nortek

New, High-Performing USV for Ocean Surveying

A new unmanned surface vehicle (USV) designed for the Chinese market offers an open and low-cost platform to measure water current and direction. Nortek China has integrated Doppler instrumentation on the vehicle to help better meet user requirements for ocean surveying.The new USV has an IPC (Industrial Personal Computer) as the main operation platform and uses Remote Desktop, a remote control technique, to communicate with all the instruments installed. This means that the vehicle offers an open and low-cost platform for customers who need to carry out several different tasks at the same time.

Seatooth PipeLogger - MKII (Photo: WFS Technologies)

WFS Tackles Subsea Challenges with SIoT

Technology to enhance operational effectiveness, while reducing risk and preventing interruption to pipeline production has been developed by Subsea Internet of Things specialist WFS Technologies.The patented Seatooth PipeLogger is an integrated pipeline, umbilical, risers and flowlines temperature monitoring and data transfer solution that can provide real-time monitoring for offshore and subsea assets. It has been previously used to reduce the risk and operational costs associated with coiled tube fatigue, producing savings of over £1 million in one installation alone.More widely, this technolog

SurfWec Artist Concept. Images Courtesy:  SurfWEC LLC.

Efficient Wave-Generated Power … Really!

production is officially 'hot', as a number of engineering advances and government subsidies have conspired to help deploy, test, and prove in real-world conditions the viability of various systems. While solar and wind power have jumped out as early leaders, there is a renewed push to turn ocean wave power into a viable, renewable source of power and stored energy. A new entrant is SurfWEC LLC, which is aiming to become the 'go to' in the wave energy category, both as a stand-alone system and as added power source, energy storage, and wave damping units co-located with existing or

Fetch AZA is a self-calibrating long-life subsea sensor logging node that enables data to be wirelessly extracted via its integrated high speed acoustic modem with a battery life option of up to 10 years. (Photo: D. Chadwell, Scripps Institute of Oceanography (Webb/Chadwell/Nooner US NSF GeoPRISMS project))

Canada's New Observatory Uses 'Seafloor GPS'

to monitor long-term movements of the subducting Juan de Fuca plate and overriding North American tectonic plate. Data gathered by the new observatory will play a critical role in informing assessments of earthquake and tsunami risk to the large populations of the Pacific North-West.The NCSZO is led by Ocean Networks Canada (ONC)—an initiative of the University of Victoria—and is made possible through cooperation of international partners that include Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) scientists at the Pacific Geoscience Center and David Chadwell from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Photo courtesy of EOMAP

The Great Barrier Reef: 3D Habitat Map

International aquatic remote sensing company EOMAP will showcase its unique contribution to the world-first 3D habitat map of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) at the International Forum on Satellite-Derived Bathymetry, SDB Day 2019, next month in Australia.The mapping project, ‘3D live habitats for the full extent of the Great Barrier Reef’, will provide, for the first time, maps of the predicted coral types and underwater landscape for the more than 3,000 reefs within the 350,000 km2 of the GBR.EOMAP's cutting edge technology provides essential data for this revolutionary project, in

Photo courtesy of FarSounder

FarSounder Acquires Japanese Patent

FarSounder, a leader in 3D forward-looking sonar, has announced the issuance of their fifth patent.It was issued by the Japanese Patent Office, one of the largest in the world. This patent relates to their invention of integrated sonar devices and methods and is FarSounder's first issued in Japan."Since 2004, FarSounder has delivered reliable navigation to vessel operators. With this invention, we expand upon our innovative navigation tool. This technology will help assure our IP as we expand our product lines into new applications and markets." Says Matthew Zimmerman, VP of Engineering

A diamond wire saw, one of the new assets in Ashtead Technology’s fleet following its acquisition of Aqua-Tech Solutions (Photo: Ashtead Technology)

Ashtead Acquires Aqua-Tech Solutions

Ashtead Technology announced Wednesday it has acquired Louisiana based subsea equipment rental and cutting services specialist, Aqua-Tech Solutions.According to Ashtead Technology, the combined business will offer clients in the Gulf of Mexico region a more robust and enhanced offering, allowing more timely and cost-effective access to the group’s full range of equipment and services from locations in Broussard and Houma, La.Ashtead Technology said the acquisition strengthens its remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) and mechanical tooling offering, broadening its survey sensor rental fleet.

Hyperion Turbidity is the first turbidity sensor combining Nephelometer and OBS readings in such a compact size. Photo: Valeport

Valeport Launches New Environmental Range

Valeport has launched a new Enviromental range of optical sensors.Hyperion Turbidity – A standalone turbidity sensor with such a small footprint to combine Nephelometer and OBS readings in the same instrument.  Created for inshore, coastal and oceanographic monitoring, this new sensor delivers a minimum detection level of just 0.03 NTU (nephelometer) and can measure turbidity up to 6,000 NTU (OBS).  The titanium housing, data output up to 16Hz and low power requirements ensures this sensor can be placed in situ for extended periods with easy access to highly accurate data.SWiFTplus

Image Courtesy Trimble

Tappan Zee Constructors ‘See’ Below the Hudson

With Trimble Marine Construction Systems and Teledyne Marine Imaging, bridge deconstruction projects can now have pinpoint accuracy.The Project @ a GlanceCustomer Profile: Tappan Zee Constructors, LLC is a consortium – including Fluor Enterprises, Inc., American Bridge Company, Granite Construction Northeast, Inc., and Traylor Bros., Inc. – that was hired to design and build the new Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge, one of the largest single design-build contracts for a bridge project in the United States. The project was started in January of 2013 and, after a phased opening that

Export Licensing: Tips U.S. Exporters Shouldn’t Overlook

Each year, the U.S. Department of Commerce receives thousands of inquiries from businesses looking to export, many of which involve licensing questions. The Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), together with other USG agencies, is responsible for export licensing and controls. BIS export licenses may be required for items (commodities, software, or technology) with proliferation, military, or terrorist uses, or which warrant control for other reasons. Export licensing requirements can apply to a wide array of products, including marine technologies. A license may

Images: Modus Seabed Intervention

Flying new Routes Subsea

North East England-based Modus Seabed Intervention Limited is a relatively small business but its goals are ambitious and focused. Elaine Maslin reports.After four years spent developing a hybrid AUV/ROV (HAUV) based on a modified Saab Sabertooth AUV system, Modus Seabed Intervention has now bought its second, deep water rated Sabertooth, which will be delivered this summer.The acquisition of its latest 3,000m-rated Sabertooth, will enable the company to continue to build on its track record and to offer vehicles with enhanced artificial intelligence and autonomy capabilities.The company’s

Photo: Seamor Marine

SEAMOR: ROV to Last Ice Project in Canada

SEAMOR Marine will provide a Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) to the department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada in Manitoba. The vehicle will be deployed to the High Arctic to inspect the area which remains frozen year-round and take part in research and evaluating ways to protect this special ecological region.The High Arctic is an important area encompassing the northern regions of Canada (Arctic Basin, Baffin Bay and the Pikialasorsuaq, or North Water Polynya) and reaches to western Greenland. This area remains frozen throughout the year, for multiple years, acting as an important refuge for ice-depend

Out-of-this-world: a UX-1 HROV. Photo: EU UNEXMIN Project

Subsea Mining: The Next Big Thing for UUVs

operating in AUV mode or in ROV mode”.The 60-strong community of researchers appears to lead the drones-for-mining pack when it comes to vehicle “awareness”, autonomy, control and commercialization. INESC TEC’s researchers have developed a disproportionate number of robots for ocean industries. These include the DART deep sea survey AUV and the autonomous deep-sea robotic lander dubbed, TURTLE.“The (TURTLE) has clear applications in subsea mining as it is a special AUV that can stay on the bottom for extended periods of time and is capable of moving itself to another location

The Falcon, nicknamed 'Yelloweye' on board (Photo: Saab Seaeye)

Falcon Helps Endangered Rockfish

Delicious to eat, the rockfish in Washington’s Puget Sound were being fished to levels that threatened extinction.Now scientists at the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife are undertaking an important conservation study into the threatened rockfish species using a Saab Seaeye Falcon underwater robotic vehicle.Senior Marine Fish Research Scientist, Dr. Dayv Lowry, explains that managing the conservation and recovery of rockfish populations in Washington’s Puget Sound, depends on the accurate monitoring of rockfish populations, depleted through overfishing and ecological degradation.

(L-R) Matt Kingsland, NOC and Paul Griffiths, Sonardyne, with the SPRINT-Nav 700 at the NOC robotics lab during Ocean Business (Photo: Sonardyne)

Sonardyne’s SPRINT-Nav 700 selected for new under-ice AUV

The UK’s center of excellence for oceanographic sciences, the National Oceanography Center (NOC), has selected high-performance hybrid navigation technology from Sonardyne International Ltd. for the next generation of its Autosub autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV), targeted for under-ice operations.The NOC, based in Southampton, will incorporate Sonardyne’s highest performing SPRINT-Nav inertial navigation system (INS) into the new 2,000 meter depth-rated Autosub, which is being specifically developed for carrying high-performance sensors on the most demanding research missions under

(Photo: Forum Subsea Technologies)

Forum Unveils eROV Simulator Training

The latest version of Forum Subsea Technologies’ VMAX simulator launched this week is designed to integrate with its next generation of electric remotely operated vehicles (eROV).The XLe Spirit was the first vehicle to be launched from the new range last year, and Forum announced on Wednesday that it has now added the eROV to its choice of vehicles within the simulator. The new lightweight and ergonomically designed eROV Hand Controller console can also be interfaced to VMAX to allow pilots to be trained in the use of the new console.The VMAX software is a 3D ROV simulation system which is

Image: Unique Group

Unique Group Debuts New Survey USV

conventional survey methods are not feasible," the release said.The Uni-Cat USV is purpose built with a long-lasting battery and the endurance of the boat can be customised to client requirements by mounting different sonars & ancillary sensors suitable for hydrographic, search and recovery, oceanography and monitoring as well as inspection surveys.Sahil Gandhi, Chief Operating Officer at Unique Group congratulated the team on the successful sea trials of Uni-Cat and further commented “Our extensive experience over the past 25 years, has uniquely positioned us to understand client requirement

(Image: EIVA)

EIVA Launches ROV Steering Software

NaviSuite Mobula is a new software product from EIVA offering advanced steering capabilities to remotely operated vehicle (ROV) owners.The market for the micro- and mini-ROV is under drastic change, with more suppliers entering the market, and prices for the ROVs dropping significantly. The performance of the entry-level ROVs makes them useful for professional use – provided you have the right software capabilities.This is now possible through a NaviSuite product dedicated to ROV steering, NaviSuite Mobula. It includes high-end features from NaviSuite Nardoa, EIVA’s package for high-end

914-DX Expansion Card (Image: Moog Focal)

Moog Focal Releases New Expansion Card

Moog Focal has launched its latest 914-X series expansion card: the 914-DX.This expansion for the 914-X series system features six isolated and software configurable serial channels for RS-232, RS-485, RS422, or TTL. Up to four of these cards may be stacked with any 914-HDE motherboard giving each system up to 24 extra isolated serial channels. The 914-DX offers a significant reduction in size for isolated serial channels, and features a software configurable TTL option for the first time from a Focal multiplexer.The suite of 914-X series cards offers multiple data formats including HD Video, Ethernet

Photo: Kongsberg Maritime

Kongsberg to Equip Belgian Research Vessel

Kongsberg Maritime will deliver an integrated suite of subsea technology to a new Belgian research vessel. Already under construction at Freire Shipyard in Vigo, Spain, the advanced new replacement for the Belgian research vessel RV Belgica is due to be handed over to the Belgian Federal Science Policy Office (BELSPO) in October 2020.Launched in 1984, RV Belgica carried out many years of service, however, emerging mechanical issues in 2013 catalyzed plans to build her replacement. Kongsberg Maritime’s delivery for the new vessel is based on a substantial integrated subsea package, comprising

Photo courtesy of Miros

Miros Measuring Mini-Tsunami Phenomenon

real-time wave data and water level, but also provides wind speed, wind direction, temperature and more. Dry mounting ensures that equipment is not impacted by the corrosive saltwater environment, the force of waves, floating objects or biofouling.The “Mini-Tsunami” PhenomenonUnlike normal ocean waves which are generated by wind or tides, tsunamis occur when large volumes of water are displaced. This type of wave is typically generated by earthquakes or rock slides. At Flaskebekk, however, the “mini-tsunamis” seem to be caused by large ships passing areas of the fjord where there

Martin McDonald, Senior Vice President, ROV Division, Oceaneering International.
Courtesy of Oceaneering International

One-on-One with Martin McDonald, SVP, ROV Division, Oceaneering

Martin McDonald, an industry veteran with more than 35 years under his belt, is responsible for Oceaneering’s global ROV business. With a broad based of ROV experience – from operation to repair to maintenance to management – McDonald shares with MTR his insights on the historical development and future prospects of this high-profile subsea sector.How and when did you know that your career would be in the maritime/subsea industry?I grew up in Fraserburgh, Scotland, a small town 40 miles north of the oilfield city of Aberdeen. Fraserburgh is best known for commercial fishing. My

A visualization of the Gulf of Mexico Loop Current. (Image: Christopher Henze, NASA/Ames)

Researchers to Monitor Disruptive US Gulf Current

A major $2 million scientific study led by the University of Rhode Island (URI)’s Graduate School of Oceanography will monitor disruptive ocean currents in the US Gulf of Mexico, with a long term goal to improve forecasts for safer offshore operations in the region.The Loop Current System (LCS) is the dominant ocean circulation feature in the Gulf of Mexico, influencing all ocean processes in the Gulf with implications for a wide range of human and natural activities, from oil exploration to coastal eco-systems. To date, knowledge of its underlying dynamics is limited.URI’s initial study

L3 Technologies

Autonomy Advances: New Vessel Range

with up to 10 AUVs at the same time.“Combining these capabilities means customers have access to vessels that can perform more remote and autonomous marine operations; including tracking multiple AUVs and real-time data harvesting in hard to access environments across defense, offshore and ocean science sectors,” said Ioseba Tena, Global Business Manager – Marine Robotic Systems, Sonardyne

MacArtney MERMAC R40 AHC Winch (Image: MacArtney)

MacArtney Equips North Sea Cable Layer

A specialized winch system aboard the ASN Ile de Class cable laying vessel will facilitate the laying of seismic cables on the seabed of the Johan Castberg oilfield in the Barents Sea for Equinor’s new permanent reservoir monitoring system.MacArtney’s MERMAC R40 active heave compensated (AHC) winch purchased by Alcatel Submarine Networks (ASN), part of the Nokia Corporation, will be utilized aboard the vessel in the laying of seismic cabling and sensors that will be permanently deployed on the Barents’ seabed to enable more frequent and improved 4D seismic interpretation of the

(Image courtesy of Wintershall)

4Subsea Acquires Astori

Engineering firm 4Subsea said it has acquired Astori, a Norwegian provider of subsea control systems for well intervention operations.Astori delivers subsea control systems for simplified XT installations that can operate all types of XTs from all main vendors, simplifying and reducing costs of subsea well intervention. 4Subsea said the firm's automation and control technology will tie into its own portfolio of decision support solutions for operators.“With this acquisition we are building upon our strategy of delivering leading-edge monitoring and maintenance services that provide significant

A Timelapse of EagleRay Transitioning from Sea to Sky (Credit NCSU)

Drones for Coastal Enviro Management

have been making increasing impacts in the maritime domain. As the capabilities of these platforms have increased, so have their contributions to maritime science, defense, and industry. Recognizing this, the Alliance for Coastal Technologies (ACT) and the Northeastern Regional Association of Coastal and Ocean Observing Systems (NERACOOS), with support from the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS), convened a workshop on Practical Uses for Drones to Address Management Problems in Coastal Zones at the Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve (WNERR) in Wells, Maine, in late 2018. The workshop

Chris Gibson, VP of Sales & Marketing at VideoRay.

One-on-One: Chris Gibson, VideoRay

(22 lb.). The three-thruster system has forward speed of over 4.4 knots and is designed to handle missions with size, space, weight, and deployment speed constraints are key.  We are selling the Pro 5 for infrastructure inspections beyond the reach of divers, search & recovery, and exploring the ocean floor up to 305m.The Pro 5 builds on the strengths of the Pro 4, with more thrust, longer tether lengths, higher resolution video, and the advantages of the MSS modular systems. We anticipate releasing new tooling, sensors for the Mission Specialist Defender and Pro 5 systems. Additionally, we are

(Image: SBG Systems)

SBG Systems Unveils New IMU

Inertial motion sensing solutions provider SBG Systems has released the Horizon IMU, a FOG-based high performance inertial measurement unit (IMU) designed for large hydrographic vessels surveying harsh environments.Navsight Marine Solution consists in a powerful and ready-to-use inertial navigation solution dedicated to hydrographers. It is available at different levels of accuracy to meet the various application requirements and can be connected to various external equipment such as Echo-sounders, LiDAR, etc.Navsight Marine Solution already offered two levels of performance with the Ekinox and Apogee

(Photo: Seatec)

Seatec Wins Subsea Pumps Order

Dutch supplier Seatec said it has been awarded a contract for the design and delivery of four subsea pump systems.The comany said all four systems will be fitted with special hydraulic motor, remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) release and various electrical sensors plus valves.Required hydraulic powerpacks (topside) are included in the scope of supply and will be Seatec design as well.Delivery is scheduled for April 2019.

Kraken president and CEO Karl Kenny (Photo: Eric Haun)

Kraken Debuts New Synthetic Aperture Sonar

A new synthetic aperture sonar (SAS) unveiled this week by Kraken Robotics Inc. is designed to provide ultra high definition seabed mapping with superior area coverage rates, according to the developer."Kraken’s latest development, the AquaPix MINSAS-240 sensor, has been designed to advance the state-of-the-art in seabed mapping for both high-speed towed systems and large diameter unmanned underwater vehicles (LDUUVs)," explained Kraken's President & CEO, Karl Kenny.The 6,000-meter-rated MINSAS-240 SAS is available now and ready for integration on a variety of unmanned underwater

Kraken President & CEO Karl Kenny (Photo: Eric Haun)

Kraken Receives $2.3 Mln from Ocean Infinity

Kraken Robotics Inc. announced Tuesday it has received $2.3 million from Ocean Infinity from the exercise of 5,760,000 warrants that had been issued in connection with the company’s private placement of units to Ocean Infinity in June 2018. The warrants expire in June 2021 and had an exercise price of $0.40.Karl Kenny, Kraken's President & CEO said, "We are pleased with the exercise of these warrants by Ocean Infinity and the confidence they are showing in our strategic direction. We recently completed factory acceptance tests (FAT) at our German facility on the first battery units

Photo courtesy of Planet Ocean

Planet Ocean, EOM Offshore Sign Agreement

Planet Ocean Ltd signed an exclusive distribution agreement with EOM Offshore LLC of Pocasset, MA for the UK and Ireland.Planet Ocean represents a broad range of oceanographic instruments in the industry and the addition of EOM Offshore’s specialized mooring equipment to its portfolio will strengthen the company’s capabilities.EOM Offshore is a Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) spin-off that was established to commercialize its patented Stretch EM Cable, along with its Electromechanical Chain and its Marine Recovery Systems.   The Stretch EM Cable solves many problems

(Image: Saab Seaeye)

Naviera Tramarsa Adds Another ROV

Offshore operator Naviera Tramarsa has extended its subsea vehicle fleet with a new Cougar XT remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) from manufacturer Saab Seaeye.The 2,000m rated Cougar XT will enter operations in May 2019, joining the company’s Saab Seaeye Falcon ROV, which it has operated for 10 years.Naviera Tramarsa’s main activity is the inspection of oil platforms in the north of Peru for the hydrocarbon exploration and production company Savia Oeru, where the Falcon has undertaken visual inspections and CP measurements.Naviera Tramarsa said the Cougar XT will expand and improve

(Photo: MAR)

WAM-V 8 Unveiled

Marine Advanced Robotics, Inc. (MAR) has launched a new autonomous surface vessel (ASV), the 8’ Wave Adaptive Modular Vessel (WAM-V), offering new capabilities.MAR is scheduled to deliver the next generation MARV II (Multifunctional Assessment Reconnaissance Vessel) to the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center, Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory (ERDC-CHL) for Pier Reconnaissance under the PIER JCTD, sponsored by the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Emerging Capability and Prototyping.The system will be comprised of an 8’ WAM-V autonomous surface vessel (ASV), as well

Marine Technology Reporter published a supplement to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Oceanology International. Photo: MTR

Oi: Tracking 50 Years of Ocean Innovation

As Oceanology International celebrates its 50th Anniversary, Marine Technology Reporter explores half a century of subsea technology development and discovery. Oceanology International Americas runs February 25-27, 2019 in San Diego.When Oceanology launched in 1969 in the seaside resort of Brighton the world was a very different place. For a start, Brighton was home to the mods and rockers, who would square off against each other on the town’s elegant seafront. The British currency included shillings and ha’ pennies and man had yet to step foot on the moon.More crucially, to the

“We are moving autonomous technologies into vehicles that have always been "remotely operated" or even manned to realize more efficiency and capability.  We are really blurring the lines between "ROV" and "AUV" and minimizing the technical difference between manned and unmanned. ”
Ben Kinnaman, CEO, Greensea Systems, Inc."

Subsea: The Future of Unmanned Vehicles

vehicle control technology and is the creator of OPENSEA, an open architecture software framework for marine robotics across various vehicle sectors.  “We develop software and hardware that revolutionizes the working relationship between people and machines both on and under the surface of the ocean,” said Kinnaman, who, like many in the sector “started working with vehicles as an ROV pilot after leaving a diving career. Now I am focused on what vehicles could be for the next generation of the subsea industry.”Kinnaman has been a leading voice in aiming to change what he perceives

Photo courtesy of SEAmagine Hydrospace Corporation

Subsea Electrification: Subsea Power Evolves

heavy.Six years ago, Southwest Electronic Energy Corp’s SeaSafe battery brought revolutionary changes to the market. The first commercial pressure-tolerant lithium-ion polymer subsea battery pack known as SeaSafe became available in 2013 after SWE worked on the design in conjunction with Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. The radically lighter and smaller battery delivered efficiency gains in installation times in addition to vastly improved performance.About four years later, SWE made available the next generation of the battery pack. The SeaSafe II, available since 2017, incorporated lessons

Resourceful: Norwegian AUV and oceanographic researchers work in sync. Photo Credit: Professor Martin Ludvigsen, NTNU AMOS

The “Disruption” in AUV Trends

off into the darkness and submerges, a tube rights itself and launches a rocket packing a satellite the size of a softball.No, it’s not General Dynamics’s large, drone-launching Marlin AUV just released. It’s a writer’s impression of the missions now being planned by AUV-equipped oceanographic researchers at Norway-based research community, AMOS. The real mission is about to begin. AMOS will shortly be test-firing tiny, disposable satellites bearing spectral cameras that will also gather and beam back the data gathered by the spectral cameras and sensors of their REMUS-dominated

A Hugin AUV being launched (Courtesy Kongsberg)

Unmanned Vehicles: 25 Years of Milestones

As 2019 begins, the ocean tech community celebrates 50 years of Oceanology International, a global gathering and showcase of the tools and technologies used by maritime industry, science, and defense. In that retrospective spirit it is informative to look to the history of the unmanned maritime vehicle (UMV) community. While there are records of developments in the field as far back as 1957, the modern era traces its roots to the early 1990s. One key source of technology developments was the MIT Sea Grant Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) Lab which spawned numerous vehicles, launched an industry

Marine Technology Magazine Cover Jun 2019 - Hydrographic Survey: Single & Multibeam Sonar

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