Fugro expands AUV capabilities with small full-function Echo MapperVessel & ROV News // May 5, 2006
Fugro has expanded its AUV fleet to include a small, deep ocean, vehicle based on a Bluefin 21.
The new Echo Mapper AUV incorporates essentially the same mapping system as the proven larger Hugin 3000 Echo Surveyor, including a 200kHz multibeam echo-sounder, 120/410kHz side-scan sonar, and 2-16 kHz CHIRP subbottom profiler. The Echo Mapper also operates to 3,000m.
The first commercial operation for the Echo Mapper AUV is a 2,000 line-km survey to provide high resolution seafloor mapping from 100m to more than 900m water depth near Los Angeles, California.
The survey, now underway, will provide permitting and engineering data for a deepwater port application planned by Woodside Natural Gas.
The Echo Mapper is relatively small and lightweight so that the entire system can be shipped worldwide on commercial aircraft to be quickly available for mobilisation onto local vessels of opportunity.
The AUV is based in Seattle, Washington.