Demand from the offshore wind industry has led Innovatum to add a second Saab Seaeye Cougar XT Compact to its ROV fleet.
This comes as Innovatum’s reputation grows in the offshore wind industry for cutting the cost of inshore survey work.
They have achieved this by creating the world’s smallest system of compact and rapidly mobilised packages for the location, tracking and survey of inshore and coastal pipelines and cables.
For survey work close inshore in the strong currents and tidal flows of the southern North Sea, the Cougar’s six-strong thruster power is essential, says Innovatum’s managing director Terry Slater.
Designed especially for working in shallow waters and in tight situations, the low-profile Cougar XT Compact version minimises the effect of current with its reduced frame size, buoyancy and weight – and a thinner 17mm tether cable that reduces the effect of drag.
Despite its small size, the Cougar XT Compact can be fitted with a wide range of equipment including Innovatum’s ‘SMARTSEARCH’ six-metre wide gradiometer array for UXO detection. Despite the use of this very large sensor system the high power to weight ratio still allows a performance comparable with work-class ROVs.
The Innovatum model is also fitted with its own Smartrak system along with a high-resolution imaging sonar and dual-headed scanning profiler for mean seabed level measurement.
Innovatum’s Smartrak is the only system in the world that can sense cables carrying either AC or DC current; and cables carrying no current or signal at all. It can also undertake passive tracking of steel pipelines.
For survey work the Cougar has the advantage of a low electrical and acoustic noise signature for optimum survey sensor data.
The Innovatum system creates comprehensive reports and charts showing accurate cable route and depth of burial along the route. This data is required by installation contractors, owners and regulatory authorities, to ensure that the cable is properly buried and not in danger of being exposed to damage.
The system can undertake submarine cable surveys in shallow water depths - the typical scenario for offshore wind farms - interconnector power cables and coastal communications cables.