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Friday Jun 17

Saipem upgrades to Sonardyne autonomous monitoring transponder technology


International oil and gas contracter, Saipem has extended the capability of its Sonardyne sixth generation (6g) acoustic positioning transponders. Functionality has now increased further, making the equipment more suited for a variety of subsea autonomous monitoring tasks.

The Sonardyne HQ in Rio das Ostras, Brazil is responsible for the conversion of the Compatt 6 instruments into autonomous monitoring transponders (AMT). Sonardyne engineers, as part of a wider scope of work to inspect, service, and re-calibrate Saipem’s inventory of long baseline (LBL) acoustic technology located in the region.

The AMT from Sonadyne facilitates users to conduct long endurance, remote monitoring surveys without requiring a surface vessel and a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) to be present throughout the project. Applications for it range from a single instrument deployed to measure tidal variation, to a larger field-wide network capable of detecting slight trends in structure movement, pipeline creep and seabed settlement.

The autonomous functionality built into every AMT allows it to operate for several years without an operator needing to intervene. Measurements from the array of onboard sensors are logged within the unit’s memory and can be recovered at any time by an AUV (autonomous underwater vehicle), ROV or vessel-of-opportunity using high-speed wireless communications.

Paul Smith, operations director of Sonardyne Brasil Ltd, said: “The 6G technology platform on which both Compatt 6 and AMT are built is very versatile, and enables users to upgrade and switch capability as their operational needs grow and stretch”

“The engineering and equipment testing facilities we have here in Rio das Ostras meant the work to service Saipem’s LBL hardware and convert some of their Compatts to AMTs, could be completed without the cost and delays associated with sending equipment out the country. For our customers, this means they can get back to work and keep their projects and budgets on schedule. Something that the entire offshore industry is focused on at the moment”

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