Prestige survey produces "industry firsts" for Kongsberg MaritimeNews // September 29, 2003
Phase I of the Prestige site survey was carried out to examine the integrity of the vessel's hull, in order that a decision could be made on how to handle the remaining cargo of oil trapped inside the crippled wreck, which lies in two parts on the seabedat a depth of 3,850m.
Kongsberg Maritime supplied the following three industry first systems, which were integrated with Thales & Sonsub's Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) for the survey:* 4000m rated LBL transponders & ROV HPR transceivers - industry first.
* EM 2000, ROV mounted Multi-beam echo sounding system - industry first at this depth.
* Hydroacoustic Aided Inertial Navigation (HAIN) system, integrated into the LBL system - industry first at this depth.
All of the systems are proven systems in their own right, but operating successfully at the depths required by the Prestige survey has made them forerunners in the deepwater survey industry.
The survey was carried out from the operational vessel, the MSV Polar Prince, which is fitted with a Kongsberg Maritime positioning system, in this case a HiPAP 500 system.
Using the supplied equipment and with Kongsberg support, a Kongsberg HAIN system was integrated with the Long Base Line (LBL) array, laid around the two wreck sections, and the combined results achieved unprecedented, reliable & repeatable ROV positioning accuracy.
The operational performance of the acoustic positioning system was crucial to the positional integrity of the whole survey. The LBL system performed without fault throughout the 60 day survey. Results from the EM 2000 multibeam echo sounder system likewise enabled a detailed picture to be created of the two sections of the Prestige.
Kongsberg Maritime also provided Survey Support Services to the project prior to & during the actual survey work itself. An intensive, project specific, training program was conducted in the weeks leading up to the offshore phase and a Survey Support Engineer accompanied the systems.
Other Kongsberg Maritime equipment supplied for the survey through rental companies includes Low light & colour cameras and a Mesotech MS 1000 Scanning Sonar.