Italy's TSO Tests Subsea Drone for Marine Geophysical Surveys
Italian transmission system operator (TSO) Terna has launched an autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) Gavia as part of a collaborative project with U.S. start-up Terradepth.
Terna and Terradepth are working together on the Odisseo project, whose aim is to advance the technologies and methods for marine geophysical surveys related to the development of important subsea infrastructure and its security.
As part of the Odisseo project, the first offshore tests were conducted near the port of Casamicciola Terme, on the island of Ischia.
During geophysical surveying of the seabed, Terna’s technicians were able to test the performance of the Gavia drone, the AUV supplied by Terradepth that was equipped with advanced sensors, including Echo Sounder (MBES), Side Scan Sonar and HD Camera.
“The partnership with Terradepth has enabled testing of innovative technologies, such as subsea drones, which can supplement and integrate traditional tools used to examine the seabed. Terna invests significant resources in marine surveying, which is a strategic practice for effective planning of technologically advanced subsea electrical connections,” said Giacomo Donnini, Terna’s Major Projects and International Development Director.
Italy’s ten-year National Grid Development Plan outlines a significant increase in investment in subsea cables infrastructure, to develop a more efficient and reliable grid.
The plan includes large subsea infrastructure projects like the Tyrrhenian Link - connecting Campania, Sicily and Sardinia - the Adriatic Link, between the Italian regions of Marche and Abruzzo - and Elmed, the energy bridge between Italy and Tunisia.