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  Saab Seaeye - Manufacturer of electric powered ROV systems
• MILLENNIUM FALCON LAUNCHES X-WING INTO MARINE WORLD
  05 May 2015
• SECOND COUGAR FOR TIDAL RENEWABLE ENERGY INSTALLERS
  27 April 2015
• BLUESTREAM PICKS PANTHER TO CUT CONSTRUCTION COSTS
  15 April 2015
• GRASSHOPPER RIDES FALCON FOR 3D VIEW OF DAM
  31 March 2015
• SABERTOOTH GOES 4D IN LAKE VÄTTERN
  12 March 2015
• FALCON KEY TO DIVER SAFETY IN CONCORDIA SALVAGE
  09 January 2015

What's New At Saab Seaeye (2015)
 

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05 May 2015

MILLENNIUM FALCON LAUNCHES X-WING INTO MARINE WORLD

click image to enlarge
'Millennium Falcon' Saab Seaeye Falcon with Adaptable Monitoring Package created by the University of Washington.
'Millennium Falcon'
Saab Seaeye Falcon with Adaptable Monitoring Package
created by the University of Washington.

The long-term effect of renewable energy installations on marine animals is to be investigated by researchers at Washington University.

The instrumentation package to achieve this comes in a specially designed underwater monitoring system deployed by a Saab Seaeye Falcon ROV.

The launch and delivery platform was dubbed the 'Millennium Falcon' by the researchers who saw the detachable instrument pod – called an Adaptable Monitoring Package or AMP – as reminiscent of an X-Wing Starfighter from the Star Wars epic.

Dr Brian Polagye Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Washington.
Dr Brian Polagye
Assistant Professor of
Mechanical Engineering
at the University of Washington.

"The Adaptable Monitoring Package can gather information in unprecedented detail about how marine life interacts with equipment used to harvest wave and tidal energy," explains Dr Brian Polagye, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at the university.

"This is a first attempt at a 'plug-and-socket' instrumentation package in the marine energy field that could change the way industry views environmental research and development," he suggests.

"The breadth of sensors and various conditions that the Adaptable Monitoring Package can observe is unprecedented," adds Dr Polagye.

Sights and sounds underwater can be tracked and measured through a variety of instrumentation options.

The AMP has hydrophones to hear marine mammal activity, a click detector to listen for whales, dolphins and porpoises, and even a device to detect fish tags. It also has a sonar system, sensors to gauge water quality and speed, and a stereo camera to collect photos and video. A fibre optic cable connection allows for real-time monitoring and control.

Attached to tidal turbines and offshore rigs

Dr Polagye says the system is unique for its ability to attach to most types of underwater infrastructure, ranging from tidal turbines to offshore oil and gas rigs. This allows researchers to easily deploy the instrumentation far offshore and recover it quickly at a relatively low cost compared with other approaches.

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Adaptable Monitoring Package detached from Falcon delivery system in University research laboratory.   Control centre aboard research vessel.
Adaptable Monitoring Package
detached from Falcon delivery system
in University research laboratory.
  Control centre aboard research vessel.

Speedy deployment and recovery is possible because the instrument pod attaches to the Falcon for delivery to a docking station, either integrated onto a turbine or other existing subsea infrastructures.

Despite the monitoring package being "about the size of a desk", the researchers were able to fit an off-the-shelf Falcon with five extra thrusters on an external frame for more power to move the mass of the instrumentation package against turbulent currents. Actuators on the vehicle latch the monitoring instruments onto a subsea docking station before the Millennium Falcon disengages, leaving the instruments in place and travelling back to the water's surface.

click image to enlarge
Launch of 'Millennium Falcon' from research vessel.
Launch of 'Millennium Falcon' from research vessel.

"This could be a first step toward a standardised 'science port' for marine energy projects," declares Dr Polagye.

He sees it as a key technology for the future of monitoring for tidal energy systems that will increase the rate of progress in environmental studies, including research around these and other structures that form artificial reefs like oil and gas rigs.

The enterprise is a collaboration project between researchers in Mechanical Engineering and the Applied Physics Laboratory within the Northwest National Marine Renewable Energy Center, a multi-institution organisation that develops marine renewable energy technologies. The centre and the Applied Physics Laboratory recently received $8 million from the U.S. Navy to develop marine renewable energy for use at its own facilities worldwide. The project leads include Dr Polagye (Mechanical Engineering), Dr Andy Stewart (Applied Physics Laboratory), and James Joslin (Mechanical Engineering).

The worldwide success of the Falcon comes from its intelligent control architecture, which provides this kind of exceptional task flexibility, along with the capability to operate in strong currents.

Saab Seaeye is the world's largest manufacturer of electric ROVs, and now includes Saab's underwater vehicle range of tethered, autonomous and hybrid underwater vehicle systems for the defence industry.

For more information contact:

Dr Brian Polagye
University of Washington
+1 206 909 1771

www.washington.edu
Matt Bates
Saab Seaeye Limited
+44 (0)1489 898 000

www.seaeye.com


27 April 2015

SECOND COUGAR FOR TIDAL RENEWABLE ENERGY INSTALLERS

For its mastery of strong currents around tidal turbines, Keynvor MorLift Ltd has added a second Saab Seaeye Cougar XT to their ROV fleet.

This new addition comes fully containerised and can be easily transported across the globe.

Alongside their more conventional Cougar assignments Keynvor MorLift (KML), specialise in deploying their Cougars for operational, installation and maintenance work at tidal energy project sites in the UK and Northern Europe where exceptionally strong tidal currents occur.

click image to enlarge
Cougar XT ROV with detachable tooling skid
Cougar XT ROV with detachable tooling skid.


"Being able to work in a strong tidal flow extends our working window deep into the tidal ranges," says Business Manager Bobbie Stone, "and the Cougar has helped us achieve improved results, even when fitted with a tooling skid."

Increasing their work time is a significant advantage for specialist marine contractor KML and they actively undertake research and development in this area with their Saab Seaeye Cougar fleet playing a key role.

"We chose to acquire another Cougar," Bobbie Stone says, "because it's unrivalled in its class for the type of subsea work we frequently carry out, particularly in high energy sites. It has good intervention capability with specialist tooling and it provides great value for money for its capacity."

In addition to work at tidal generation installations, KML's Cougars are used for many subsea tasks, such as general survey, light work duties, subsea installation, recoveries and salvage, along with the deployment and monitoring of specialist subsea survey/research equipment, including acoustic doppler current profilers, known as ADCPs.

"Being able to work in a strong tidal flow
extends our working window
deep into the tidal ranges"


Bobbie Stone
Keynvor MorLift

KML has its own fleet of vessels and whereas the first Cougar system was integrated into one of those, the new Cougar has its own customised container system. This means it can be deployed from any vessel, even a small workboat, either supplied from KML's own fleet or sourced locally - resulting in reduced costs and increased flexibility for KML clients, explains Bobbie Stone.

She emphasises the Cougar's advantage as a compact vehicle that has power and manoeuvrability to handle bolt-on skids with different tooling options for a wide range of subsea tasks.

Its exceptional control and response come from its six thrusters: four vectored horizontally and two vertically. Each thruster has velocity feedback for precise control in all directions and is interfaced to a fast-acting control system and solid-state gyro for enhanced azimuth stability.

Keynvor MorLift is a UK-based specialist marine contractor with experience including renewable energy construction, project cargo, marine civil engineering and salvage operations.

Saab Seaeye is the world's largest manufacturer of electric ROVs, and now includes Saab's underwater vehicle range of tethered, autonomous and hybrid underwater vehicle systems for the defence industry.

For more information contact:

Bobbie Stone
Keynvor MorLift Ltd
+44 (0)845 5193123

www.keynvormorlift.co.uk
Matt Bates
Saab Seaeye Limited
+44 (0)1489 898 000

www.seaeye.com


15 April 2015

BLUESTREAM PICKS PANTHER TO CUT CONSTRUCTION COSTS

With the subsea industry looking to cut costs, Bluestream Offshore has ordered a fourth Saab Seaeye Panther XT Plus ROV to undertake tasks normally performed by hydraulic vehicles.

"Our clients want high-spec equipment to take on more complex construction work at a lower cost," says Bluestream's managing director, Rolf de Vries.

"For instance, we have proved that many construction tasks can be undertaken by a Seaeye Panther XT Plus fitted with Schilling manipulators combined with hydraulic powered ROV tooling, rather than an complex capital intensive hydraulic ROV system."

An electric work ROV system also needs less space, fewer staff and is much faster to deploy, he says, which bring considerable savings in operational costs when compared to a large hydraulic work class ROV. The mobilisation window of 12 hours and wide variation of tasks increases the utilization of the systems and so the economics, he adds.

"We chose another Panther because it's a high level system with the technical capability that allows us to develop complex work scopes through integrating more work-class tooling to meet the needs of our clients for subsea intervention tasks."

He explains that the Saab Seaeye system architecture offers a solid base for adding more system options as well as enabling his engineers to further integrate his company's own developed technology for subsea intervention tooling into the system development. "We believe in evolution, step by step, project by project, to develop us further instead of revolution."

Bluestream engineers also benefit from the Panther's 10-strong thruster power and design architecture that allows it to accommodate a wide range of tooling, yet remain manoeuvrable and able to work in strong currents.

The addition of another Panther now brings Bluestream's fleet of ROVs to 17 Saab Seaeye vehicles.

Bluestream is investing heavily in expanding its field of operations and has recently worked in Russia and the Gulf of Mexico where Rolf de Vries says he could rely upon the Saab Seaeye vehicles to provide a stable platform for whatever task was required.

click image to enlarge   click image to enlarge
Saab Seaeye Panther XT Plus work ROV   New Panther adds to Bluestream's 17-strong Saab Seaeye ROV fleet
Saab Seaeye Panther XT Plus work ROV   New Panther adds to Bluestream's 17-strong
Saab Seaeye ROV fleet

Bluestream Offshore provide a wide range of services to the international oil and gas industry, along with the renewable and maritime sectors.

Saab Seaeye is the world's largest manufacturer of electric ROVs, and now includes Saab's underwater vehicle range of tethered, autonomous and hybrid underwater vehicle systems for the defence industry.

For more information contact:

Rolf de Vries
Bluestream Offshore
+31 (0)223 637784

www.bluestreamoffshore.com
Matt Bates
Saab Seaeye Limited
+44 (0)1489 898 000

www.seaeye.com


31 March 2015

GRASSHOPPER RIDES FALCON FOR 3D VIEW OF DAM

A retractable sonar system has been specially designed by underwater engineering services company Subsea Fenix to set atop a Saab Seaeye Falcon ROV.

Nicknamed 'The Grasshopper' the concept has made possible a more detailed inspection of a reservoir dam in central Italy than could otherwise be achieved.

Faced with the problem of mounting a BlueView 3D Sonar system high enough above the ROV to gather all‐round images and avoid the vehicle's chassis obstructing the scan, Subsea Fenix knew it would be impossible to swim any distance top‐loaded in this way.

Their inspired solution was to create a retractable structure that lowers the topside mass whilst the Falcon is swimming, then remotely raises it when needed.

With a full inspection package aboard the ROV it has been possible to provide accurate visual 2D and 3D sonar data of inlets and outlets, grids, tunnels and ramps ‐ whilst also identifying the presence of debris and sediment.

The clarity of both the high‐resolution cameras and advanced sonar has given the inspection team a clear and accurate view of the condition of the dam and its operational components.

Critical discoveries

The Falcon helped uncover critical problems such as rock fall damage to the rail used to lower the massive outflow closure gate, and rock debris blocking the cable wheels that lower the gate.

Scans also revealed that a third of the grids clearing the water flow were obstructed by sediment.

Divers were used for much of the remedial work with the Falcon in support. The 2D sonar aboard the ROV was used to view the underwater horizon and monitor diver activity, whilst at the same time observing crane movement of a dredging pump.

In addition to the top‐mounted BlueView sonar system, the total inspection package for the Subsea Fenix Falcon includes a Tritech Super Seaprince scanning sonar, a high‐resolution colour video camera with 180‐degree tilt platform and low‐light mono camera.

The Falcon's intelligent control architecture makes it easy to add and change such systems as needed.

Although small enough to be manhandled, even from a small boat, its five powerful thrusters make the Falcon highly manoeuvrable and able to hold steady in moving water whilst filming or undertaking various missions.

Subsea Fenix's future plans include using the Falcon at the same Lake for a deep tunnel inspection to an interconnected lake.

click image to enlarge
Dam in central Italy.
Dam in central Italy

click image to enlarge
Subsea Fenix team with their 'Grasshopper' - the Falcon<br>with the retractable system lowered.
Subsea Fenix team with their 'Grasshopper' - the Falcon
with the retractable system lowered.

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High resolution cameras give clear view of anchorage for grids.   Outflow closure gate rail mechanism damaged by rock-fall.
High resolution cameras give clear
view of anchorage for grids.
  Outflow closure gate rail mechanism
damaged by rock-fall.

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3D portion of turbine inlet channel deep inside dam wall.   3D image discovers 30% of grids obstructed by sediment.
3D portion of turbine inlet channel
deep inside dam wall.
  3D image discovers 30% of
grids obstructed by sediment.

click image to enlarge   click image to enlarge
Drawings show the retractable structure that lowers the topside mass whilst swimming.   Drawings show the retractable structure that lowers the topside mass whilst swimming.
Drawings show the retractable structure that lowers the topside mass whilst swimming.

Subsea Fenix is an underwater engineering services company that undertakes surveys, inspections, maintenance and repair of subsea assets and hydro engineering resources.

Saab Seaeye is the world's largest manufacturer of electric ROVs, and now includes Saab's underwater vehicle range of tethered, autonomous and hybrid underwater vehicle systems for the defence industry.

For more information contact:

Federico Morello
Subsea Fenix
+39 0544 523280

www.subseafenix.com
Matt Bates
Saab Seaeye Limited
+44 (0)1489 898 000

www.seaeye.com


12 March 2015

SABERTOOTH GOES 4D IN LAKE VÄTTERN

For offshore operators, a 4D geo-spatial data acquisition system with data visualisation in real-time is now available for the Seaeye Sabertooth AUV.

Its full capabilities were demonstrated to representatives of twelve companies from seven countries, together with the Danish Navy, in Saab's exclusive underwater test centre at Lake Vättern, Sweden.

This advanced system has been configured for the Sabertooth by Saab QPS, a Saab Seaeye partner and leading developer of hydrographic survey and mapping software.

Operators get a complete hydrographic data acquisition, navigation and processing software package that is fully integrated into the Sabertooth.

a 4D geo-spatial data acquisition system with data visualisation in real-time
Autonomous mission plan in Lake Vättern.

The development unifies the QINSy and Fledermaus systems developed by Saab QPS into a single enhanced option for the Sabertooth.

QINSy is a data interface and acquisition software package that consolidates data acquired from different sensors in real-time. All acquired data can be viewed in various dedicated displays, which is ideal for real-time QA/QC of the data.

Fledermaus analyses and provides 4D visualisation of the acquired data, such as synchronised video, water column analysis, multi-beam sonars and pipe detection sensors.

For the demonstration the Sabertooth was equipped with a high-end sensor suite including side scan sonar, sub bottom profilers, high frequency imaging sonar, multibeam echo sounder and cameras, along with GPS, DVL and inertial measurement unit (IMU) supporting the navigation. Processing of the trajectory data was achieved with an algorithm developed by Saab Dynamics and renown for its navigational accuracy.

Images from the Sabertooth entering the docking station autonomously.
Images from the Sabertooth entering the docking station autonomously.

One demonstration included an extended autonomous survey mission performed to show the extent of the navigation accuracy and trajectory performance, as well as the quality of the high-resolution sonar images captured.

Another involved a range of autonomous missions in the lake including seabed survey, structure inspection, obstacle avoidance and a docking manoeuvre into an underwater docking station. A fibre link was used to allow live viewing of the data being gathered.

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Visitors examining live survey data transmitted from the Sabertooth.
Visitors examining live survey data
transmitted from the Sabertooth.


Visitors had an opportunity to examine the Sabertooth, a breakthrough hybrid concept that combines the autonomy and range of an AUV with the manoeuvrability and hovering capability of a light-work ROV - making it an ideal vehicle for long-range missions where there is a need to stop and conduct a detailed task.

Three operational modes are possible: autonomous roaming, attached fibre-optic cable, and umbilical for power and communications.

Fitted with the advanced Saab Seaeye iCON intelligent control system, its behaviour-based architecture offers a decision-making capability that can, in survey mode, react to unexpected data by deviating from a programmed mission to gather data or perform a task before resuming its mission plan.

Seabed docking station.
Seabed docking station.

It is intended that the Sabertooth can be left at deep and distant locations where it can operate from a remote subsea docking station ready to be launched on routine inspection, repair and maintenance work, and deal with emergencies.

At such a remote location, where it might remain for a year, tooling packages can be stored at its docking station where batteries can be re-charged, data and video downloaded and fresh instructions uploaded over the internet.

As offshore operators go deeper and into more difficult to access areas, the Sabertooth Hybrid AUV/ROV concept is attracting interest from those looking for a reliable and versatile underwater vehicle that can accommodate a wide range of data acquisition systems and tooling onto a single platform.

The strategic alliance between Saab Seaeye and Saab QPS bridges the gap between hardware and software development that is bringing innovative technology opportunities to the industry and setting new standards.

click image to enlarge   click image to enlarge
Sabertooth single hull.   Sabertooth double hull.
Sabertooth single hull.   Sabertooth double hull.

Saab QPS is a software design company specialised in Hydrographic and Maritime applications. The main activity of QPS is focused on system integration and the development of software systems that are used for hydrographic surveys and seafloor mapping.

Saab Seaeye is the world's largest manufacturer of electric ROVs, and now includes Saab's underwater vehicle range of tethered, autonomous and hybrid underwater vehicle systems for the defence industry.

For more information contact:

Richard Hill
Saab QPS
31 (0) 30 6941 220

www.qps.nl
Matt Bates
Saab Seaeye Limited
+44 (0)1489 898 000

www.seaeye.com


09 January 2015

FALCON KEY TO DIVER SAFETY IN CONCORDIA SALVAGE

With Concordia finally in dock, Italian marine contractor Micoperi reports that the Saab Seaeye Falcon ROV played a vital role in diver safety during the largest maritime salvage operation in history.

Fabio Bartolotti of Micoperi, the contractor responsible for the project, says that the Falcon worked every day of the salvage operation, spending over 1000 hours in the water.

He says that every single time a diver entered the water the Falcon was deployed in their support and for their safety.

The ROV was sent into places too dangerous for divers, and on examination and survey missions without the need for divers.

In addition the Falcon was employed for tasks including the scanning procedure needed to measure the distance between the legs of the support platform built below the ship ready for the raising of the vessel.

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Saab Seaeye Falcon ROV played a vital role in diver safety during the largest maritime salvage operation
A main objective was to minimise the environmental impact and protect the
local economy and tourism industry.

For salvage operations such as this, the Falcon has the advantage of being small enough to be easily manhandled into the water, yet has the thruster power to work in strong currents and the intelligent architecture to handle a range of tools including manipulator, cutters, cameras and survey and sonar systems.

This special blend of muscular intelligence makes it a vehicle of choice for salvage tasks where investigation, search and recovery are involved.

Powerful cutters can be fitted to clear debris and entanglements - including polypropylene rope up to 19mm thick and steel rope up to 12mm diameter.

Its sophisticated manipulator has both a powerful grip and a light touch for handling hefty or delicate items.

Cameras, along with variable intensity lighting, can be employed to view places too difficult or too confined for divers to access safely.

If a diver must be deployed, the ROV can preview the area, identify hazards and pinpoint the site of interest. It can then take down a safety line, if needed, ready for the diver to decend safely to the location.

Tools and equipment can be transported back and forth to the diver, as necessary, saving valuable dive time.

Time limits for the Falcon are not a consideration as it can work tirelessly in virtually any location, for however long it takes.

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The Falcon provides ideal diver support and can be fitted with a range of systems for undertaking a variety of tasks.   The largest marine salvage operation in history.
The Falcon provides ideal diver support and can be fitted with a range of systems for
undertaking a variety of tasks.
  The largest marine salvage operation in history.

The salvage contract was won by Micoperi in partnership with the American company, Titan Salvage, as best able to fulfil the main objectives set out in the tender specifications: removal of the wreck in one piece, minimal risk, minimal environmental impact, protection of the local economy and tourism industry, and maximum working safety.

Micoperi is a long-established and leading offshore contractor specialising in underwater construction and engineering.

Saab Seaeye is the world's largest manufacturer of electric ROVs, and now includes Saab's underwater vehicle range of tethered, autonomous and hybrid underwater vehicle systems for the defence industry.

For more information contact:

Fabio Bartolotti
Micoperi SRL
+39 0544 422252

www.micoperi.com
Matt Bates
Saab Seaeye Limited
+44 (0)1489 898 000

www.seaeye.com