Sonardyne Brasil provides acoustics technology for Fugro’s flagship Brazilian vessel


Global technology group Sonardyne Brasil has supplied specific acoustic positioning technology for Fugro’s flagship Brazilian vessel, Fugro Aquarius.

Known as Ranger 2 Ultra-Short BaseLine (USBL) system, Sonardyne’s acoustic positioning technology is currently being used to track the exact position of Fugro Aquarius’ Work-class ROVs in water depths of up to 3,000m.

Ranger 2 will also help Fugro Aquarius in its subsea inspection, repair and maintenance activities in the Brazilian region.

"We’re confident they will quickly see a return on that investment in the form of faster and more efficient survey operations."

The system, installed in Fugro Aquarius, has been configured with Sonardyne’s deep water optimised GyroUSBL 7000, which includes a USBL transceiver, and a high survey-grade inertial sensor in the same unit.

The specified configuration increases precision by removing common sources of system errors, including lever arm offsets, pole bending and ship flexing.

Sonardyne Brasil regional head Barry Cairns said: “It demonstrates their commitment to investing in the best available subsea technology for their IRM operations offshore Brazil.

“We’re confident they will quickly see a return on that investment in the form of faster and more efficient survey operations and greater vessel utilisation.”

The GyroUSBL 7000, installed through the hull of Fugro Aquarius, calculates the position of the vessel’s two Fugro-built 150HP ROVs by measuring the range and bearing to the Wideband Mini Transponder(WMT) fitted to each vehicle.

Sonardyne said that the WMTs provide reliable tracking in crowded offshore environments. 

Introduced last year, the 83m long Fugro Aquarius has been designed specifically for the Brazilian market.

In April, Petrobras contracted the vessel to conduct various works, including subsea video and data acquisition, site investigations, and asset integrity monitoring for one year.