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Autonomous monitoring, analysis and reporting system

K-Observer

K-Observer
K-Observer is an autonomous monitoring, analysis and reporting system for continuous and long-term subsea monitoring applications.

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K-Observer is a fully autonomous monitoring, analysis and reporting system supporting the integration of various sensors (including third party sensors) for continuous and long-term subsea monitoring. It is designed for applications such as scour monitoring, structural monitoring, structural deformation, marine growth and corrosion, displacement of sediments, dredging, environmental monitoring, fish farming and other similar applications where the sensors are located close to the surface.

The system is designed for Integrated Operation directly from on-shore control centres, which enables higher performance and more cost effective monitoring.

K-Observer System components

  • Sensor Interface Unit (SIU): Remote station and interface box for up to ten sensors. Built-in data logger and optional alternative power supply as well as various communication methods such as Ethernet, fibre optic, GSM and satellite.
  • Data Processing Unit (DPU): Central data server for the connection of up to ten SIUs. The DPU autonomously handles the system management, data processing and automatic alerts at predefined threshold levels.
  • Dual Axis Sonar (DAS): Extremely robust built dual axis single beam sonar designed for long-term monitoring in harsh conditions.
  • User Interface and 3D Viewer (K-Scan): User interface software for system monitoring, data retrieval, manual control and 3D visualisation of all sensor data.

Key Features

  • Fully autonomous monitoring, analysis and reporting system
  • Scalable system, supporting integration of various sensors
  • Extremely rugged design to meet the harsh conditions at the monitoring location
  • Supports use of a broad variety of communication methods (cable, fibre optic, GSM and satellite)
  • Alternative power supplies (batteries, solar and wind)
  • Integrated data filtering, processing and interpretation algorithms

K-Observer Application Example – Monitoring of underwater structures and scour

K-Observer

The K-Observer is a hydro acoustic monitoring system for detection of scour, deformation, marine growth and corrosion on and around underwater structures. K-Observer is designed as a fully autonomous monitoring, analysis and reporting system. Critical parameters of the underwater structure and the surrounding seabed are scanned at predefined and variable time intervals to allow for a timely reaction on any changes in these parameters, thus extending the life-cycle of offshore structures such as wind turbines, oil rigs, quay walls, terminals and bridges.

Due to continuous sampling of the seabed around the structure, scour or deformation effects of events that happen at irregular intervals such as storms, strong currents and waves will be immediately observed. Diametrically opposed, traditional surveying methods are limited in providing only snap-shots at periodic intervals (when the survey takes place), introducing the possibility to miss a critical event or false-scour.

The integrated 3D filtering, processing and interpretation algorithms embedded within the K-Scan architecture replace the time consuming manual filtering, processing and interpretation of 3D point cloud data from multiple timelines, further reducing operational costs over time.

This K-Observer systems components

  • Sensor Interface Unit (SIU): Remote station and interface box for up to 4 DAS sonar heads. Built-in dataloger and optional stand-alone power supply as well as various communication methods such as Ethernet, fibre optical, GSM, satellite
  • Dual Axis Sonar (DAS): Extremely robust built dual axis single beam sonar designed for long-term monitoring in harsh conditions
  • Data Processing Unit (DPU): Central data server for the connection of up to 10 SIU
  • User Interface and 3D Viewer (K-Scan): Windows based user interface software including integrated 3D visualisation algorithms with full report generating capability

Scour monitoring in port of Hamburg

Bottom profile
Scour monitoring in port of Hamburg using the K-Observer.

K-Observer usage

Starting from beginning of February 2015, Kongsberg Maritime Embient, together with Hamburg Port Authority (HPA), is conducting a long term test installation (3 - 6 months) of the K-Observer system. The system will be used mainly for scour and structural monitoring applications around the port area. The DAS sonar is deployed with a pole and fixed on a dolphin, with the transducer pointing down to the area of interest.

One of the important installation factors to be considered was the tide difference of up to 3.6 m in the port, meaning that the installation process had to be conducted during the lowest tide. The Sensor Interface Unit was installed on the closest pontoon, and connection to the Data Processing Unit (located 20 km away in the Kongsberg Maritime Embient office) and the Graphical User Interface was established over GSM.

The system is configured to scan the seabed once a day and the data will regularly be sent over a VPN connection to the DPU mounted in the rack in the office, where the automated data filtering and reporting processes will be performed. The system status and the collected data can be manually analysed over the Graphical User Interface from anywhere in the world where an internet connection is available.

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