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Hydrographic Survey Sonar

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fter starting small, in inland waterways, use of USVs in the Maritime Sector, at L3Harris.

for survey operations has moved into coastal and now The trajectory is clear. Ivar de Josselin de Jong, director of offshore waters. Given the extensive amount of sea- remote inspection at Fugro, thinks that in the next decade, bed and rapid growth in offshore wind, there’s plenty there will be more uncrewed operations than crewed opera-

A of work out there for them to do. tions. “That whole business will look completely different,”

With the travel restrictions posed by Covid and increasing he says. “An offshore survey vessel has 30-50 people on awareness of climate change, the incentives to use them have board. We’re moving to solutions where we have all personnel only increased. working in the safe onshore environment, with HSE and CO2 “We are seeing a strong drive for USVs to become main- footprint reduction. It’s super exciting.” stream,” says XOCEAN’s CEO James Ives. “USVs offer three key bene? ts; safety – no people required to go offshore; envi- ronment – our USVs emit 1,000 times less carbon emissions FUGRO than a conventional survey ship; and economics – USVs can Fugro started working on USVs 6-7 years ago, says de Jong, deliver the same data, at a lower cost.” with the goal to make operations more effective and more ef- “USVs consume up to 95% less fuel than traditional, crewed ? cient. One of the ? rst initiatives was a 2m-long prototype vessels, supporting international ambitions for net zero global with an MBES and remote-control capabilities for inland wa- emissions in the marine industry,” says Ben Simpson, CEO as ters. Fugro also converted a small survey boat to uncrewed

USV manufacturer SEA-KIT. for cable landing surveys and shallow water activities. Seabed “The decrease in at-sea man-hours, reduced operator work- mapping followed, in partnership with ASV Global Ltd., now loads, increased ef? ciency, along with extended endurance, L3 Harris ASV, with whom Fugro developed its 9m-long die- and decreased carbon footprint, have also provided signi? cant sel-powered Blue Shadow vessel, equipped with an EM 2040 risk reduction and environmental bene? ts,” adds Rick Wil- MBES and “developed to provide a high-speed hydrography liams, Director, Unmanned Surface and Subsurface systems solution,” says de Jong. Fugro envisions multiple Blue Shad-

DriX off the coast of

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