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The Autonomous Surveyor USV on its way to a survey missionTeams from wind farm owner Northland Power and Subsea Europe Services have concluded a pilot project to apply Uncrewed Surface Vessels (USV) and Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV) to marine survey and underwater inspection operations at the Deutsche Bucht Offshore Wind Farm, located in the German North Sea.
The July 2023 project was commissioned to verify performance and further develop the operational workflows of Subsea Europe Services’ Autonomous Surveyor USV for multibeam surveying and A.IKANBILIS Hovering AUV (HAUV) for subsea inspections such as scour and marine growth surveys, when deployed from a Service Operations Vessel (SOV) mothership already resident for Operations & Maintenance (O&M) at the wind farm. The so-called ‘mothership concept’ was proven successful throughout the pilot, with integration of the various teams and equipment working aboard the Albert Betz SOV resulting in a wider weather window for marine survey and underwater inspection operations, with launch and recovery up to Sea State 3 and data acquisition according to the specified requirements. Full commercial readiness of a combined turnkey USV/HAUV solution for projects and permanent mothership deployment is expected by Q1 2024.