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Jan De Nul orders a seagoing unmanned survey vessel for marine and offshore constructionJan De Nul Group has ordered Maritime Robotic's hybrid Mariner Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) as the first step towards unmanned and autonomous offshore survey operations. Named Beluga 01, this vessel will sail under the Luxembourg flag and be deployed for worldwide hydrographical and environmental surveys on marine and offshore construction projects.
The Beluga 01 is equipped with a fully redundant hybrid propulsion system. The prime source of propulsion is a diesel engine that is mechanically coupled to the water jet. Alternatively, the vessel can be operated in full electrical mode. The additional electrical Torqeedo propulsion, installed parallel to the main propulsion, can manoeuvre the vessel in sensitive marine areas.  There is also a range extender module to top up the batteries which will operate longer than 12 hours. Furthermore, the electrical propulsion acts as redundancy for the main engine in case of a failure, or vice versa. The Beluga 01 is capable of operating in up to sea state five, although this usually precludes gathering any useful survey data. The vessel can survive in up to sea state seven. The Beluga 01 only needs 80 cm of water to operate in.
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