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Remus AUVs for Commercial Research Applications

AUVs have revolutionized marine and ocean exploration. What was once an expensive, limited endeavor completely reliant on surface vessels is now accomplished by AUVs, or self-powered undersea robots that gather high-resolution remote spatial and temporal measurements.

AUVs offer a nimble, flexible alternative to traditional surface vessels. They can glide close to the surface, dive to depths of more than 6000 meters, explore shallow waters or hover in hazardous areas where navigation is difficult. The benefits are numerous. AUVs have reduced the high costs of ocean exploration and sampling while increasing the availability, quality and quantity of scientific marine data.

Primary Applications

  • Environmental Monitoring
    Emergency Response: AUVs are an ideal tool for post-hurricane assessment of subsea infrastructure and the surrounding environment. They can also be utilized for oil spill missions to measure hydrocarbons in the water column. AUVs can be deployed rapidly from docks or ships of opportunity, making rapid response to any emergency situation simple.
    Water Quality: HYDROID AUVs can record temperature, salinity, turbidity and current as part of their standard payload. They can also be equipped to detect various gasses and particles in the water. Much of this data is collected during every mission. Dives can be planned to map thermoclines and pycnocline in 3 dimensions, with return surveys for comparison providing temporal awareness.
    Ecosystems Assessment: Larger AUVs are sometimes used for fish stock assessment surveys and can be equipped with acoustic sensors to detect and quantify fish, krill and plankton. The standard acoustic sensors and cameras can also be used for benthic habitat mapping. Volumetric calculations using synthetic aperture data provide a unique way to assess coral.
  • Offshore (Oil & Gas)
    Pipeline Survey: AUVs provide a rapid way to conduct pipeline surveys. Able to track alongside or overhead a pipe without intervention from an operator, HYDROID AUVs can collect HiSAS, SSS, MBE and SBP data to assess burial, freespans and buckling. During the overhead survey the on-board camera collects a mosaic of images for visual condition inspection of the pipe, junctions, sleepers and anodes. This data is quickly visualized in the Reflection post mission analysis tool that, for quality purposes, identifies areas of concern for further inspection.
  • Hydrography
    Route Survey: Route surveys for pipeline and subsea cable installation corridors require a flexible, multi-sensor platform. AUVs are uniquely capable of providing the integrated sensor and navigation payloads needed to produce high resolution, highly accurate data to support route surveys. Using our Reflection post-processing software, operators will produce a geophysical dataset that will allow them to identify safe route corridors in the most efficient manner.
    Deep Sea Mining: HYDROID AUVs support the growing deep sea mining industry by offering vehicles that operate in the desired depths of 1000 to 6000 meters. The AUVs carry industry-leading geophysical survey instrumentation that produces high-resolution digital terrain maps of the ocean floor. When compared to traditional surveying methods, HYDROID AUVs provide the deep sea mining industry with more detailed imagery of ocean floor structures and surface texture to aide in the identification of mineral deposits.
  • Search & Recovery
    Asset Location: HYDROID AUVs have been used in subsea asset location surveys for over a decade. Operations have included searches for downed aircraft, sunken vessels and marine forensic investigations. These AUVs carry state-of-the-art sonars that efficiently map vast areas of the seafloor and allow users to identify objects of interest in both shallow coastal water and the dark depths of the open ocean. After identifying objects with sonar, the AUVs can be programmed to get visual confirmation using cameras that are co-located with the sonars on the AUV. With vehicles that can survey from 0 to 6000 meters, combined, both companies’ AUVs can effectively search 98% of the world’s oceans.
    Marine Archaeology: Marine archaeology at depths beyond the capabilities of scuba divers was a difficult proposition before the development of AUVs. Today, AUVs are cost-effective tools for locating, identifying and surveying archaeological sites in water depths up to 6000 meters. AUVs that integrate sonar and optical instrumentation are ideal for conducting high-resolution bottom surveys and producing photomosaics of an archaeological site with exceptional detail. AUVs give archaeologists both a wide area and fine detail perspective of sites that would be unimaginable using traditional methods.

Advantages

The strength of KONGSBERG and HYDROID AUVs is the seamless integration of sophisticated instrumentation into flexible, highly modular vehicles that provide the operator the highest quality data and positioning available in the market today. The vehicles are easily transportable and can be operated from vessels of opportunity almost anywhere in the world. Both companies’ AUVs feature customizable payloads that have the flexibility to accommodate multi-beam sonars, high-resolution cameras, synthetic aperture sonar and more, giving the operator the flexibility to meet many mission scenarios with a single vehicle. With vehicles ranging from shallow, coastal water surveyors to 6000 meter ocean water workhorses, our AUVs can operate in approximately 98% of the world’s ocean.

Sensors can be placed close to the area of interest. Coupled with high quality navigation solutions this ensures the data is both meaningful and accurate.

They are quick and easy to deploy around the world, and most units require minimal installation and calibration, thereby reducing ship time and commercial assets.

The endurance of an AUV allows the vehicle to investigate a larger area for a longer period of time. In addition, the potential to network multiple AUVs together can increase productivity to levels never seen before in commercial applications.

R&D Efforts

The R&D efforts of KONGSBERG and HYDROID have focused on enabling AUVs to operate multiple payload sensors simultaneously, as this is the real advantage AUVs offer over traditional survey methods. In addition, researchers have spent more than 15 years on lowering the platform’s signature (electrically, acoustically and magnetically), as well as carefully selecting payload sensor frequencies and managing their synchronization. The result: Marine or fresh, pelagic or benthic, photic or aphotic, both companies’ AUVs are uniquely equipped to gather high-quality data in a wide range of ocean environments.

AUV Models

The REMUS AUV is available in three models: REMUS 100, REMUS 600 and REMUS 6000. The lightweight and compact REMUS 100 is designed for shallow water work up to 100 meters; the mid-range REMUS 600 can operate in depths of 600 or 1500 meters; and the deep-water REMUS 6000 workhorse operates in water up to 6000 meters deep.

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