Page 49: of Marine Technology Magazine (June 2012)

AUV Arctic Operations

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Photo Courtesy Chris Hammond this new technology is meant to comple- ment that, not replace it,? he says. And Dinn believes the market is much broad- er than oil and gas. ?There are applica-tions for power projects running seabed power cables for domestic use and for export.? The crown corporation Nalcor Energy has explored routes for an HVDC trans- mission line from the Lower Churchill Hydroelectric Project across the frigid Strait of Belle Isle to the island of New- foundland. For that work in the rela- tively shallow waters, they selected con- ventional tow  sh technology. For new technology to break into such a market the AUV-SBI team will need to demon- strate that they can cost-effectively  y accurately and bring back good, robust data to generate results in which the cli-ents can be con dent.The Last Ten Percent Back in the lab after the sea trials, Lewis is pleased but reserved. ?We have completed ninety per cent of the process towards integration,? he says. When Gary Dinn  rst broached the idea they wanted to see if they could engineer the solution in such a way that they could understand the dynamics and teach it to others. Now he knows. ?What gets me excited is that we have a lot more vehicle,? says Lewis. We are no longer limited to the physical size of the AUV. We have introduced another dimension?it was a torpedo and now we have the starship Enterprise,? he says with a broad smile, adding that it is up to the PanGeo?s of the world to create the commercial opportunities.At the time of writing Dinn and Lewis were scheduling meetings for late May 2012, to map out the  nal integration and trials of the ?live? unit in early au- tumn, 2012. ?As part of that, we will con rm the test results, complete the physical integration and get ready to  y,? says Dinn. Dinn says the ideal outcome would be to see the SBI integrated into the unit and an oil company contract them to survey a potential pipeline route. ?But applications for this type of mobile, inexpensive surveying is pretty broad, and can even include mineral prospect- ing, and archaeological work,? explains Dinn. ?The AUV changes the equation.? MTR #5 (34-49).indd 49MTR #5 (34-49).indd 496/1/2012 12:17:25 PM6/1/2012 12:17:25 PM

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