Photo: The Harvey Intervention vessel, used during the Mad Dog project (Courtesy of Subsea 7)

Sonardyne goes remote on Fusion 2 survey

UK-headquartered marine technology company Sonardyne has conducted remote Fusion 2 survey operations on a live subsea construction campaign in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico.

Photo of the Harvey Intervention vessel, used during the Mad Dog project (Courtesy of Subsea 7)
The Harvey Intervention vessel, used during the Mad Dog project (Courtesy of Subsea 7)

Using its new Remote Operations Access Module (ROAM), Sonardyne surveyors based in the UK were able to remotely access and operate the Fusion 2 survey and construction software onboard Subsea 7 vessels in the Gulf of Mexico.

By using the ROAM, potential limitations on operations posed by international travel restrictions were mitigated and the decision to upgrade from Fusion 1 to Fusion 2 was de-risked, according to Sonardyne.

Edward Moller, Head of Energy at Sonardyne, said: “Facilitating remote operations is just one of the many steps we’re taking towards meeting industry’s and our own digitalisation, environmental and safety goals.

“While this is the first time we’ve provided a remote operational support for Fusion 2, it’s just the latest remote capability we routinely offer across our business, from data harvesting using uncrewed surface vessels to Ultra-Short BaseLine system verification tests on vessels of opportunity.”

The remote operations service was provided last summer during a deepwater campaign on the Mad Dog Phase 2 project in the US Gulf of Mexico.

Subsea 7 onboard surveyors were able to undertake remote training in Fusion 2 prior to deployment.

Photo showing structures being installed during the Mad Dog construction campaign (Courtesy of Subsea 7)
Structures being installed during the Mad Dog construction campaign (Courtesy of Subsea 7)

Then, using the ROAM, Sonardyne surveyors working onshore in the UK were able to work shifts alongside their counterparts onboard the vessel in Fusion 2, supporting live positioning operations and taking secure control if required, according to Sonardyne.

Fusion 2 streamlines offshore field development operations by reducing the time and capital expenditure needed to undertake survey and construction tasks, according to Sonardyne.

It combines traditional Long BaseLine (LBL) and inertial navigation system (INS) techniques in one, unlocking significant benefits, not least being able to perform real-time simultaneous location and mapping (SLAM) calibration of sparse seabed transponder arrays.

Real-time SLAM calibration capability means far less hardware has to be deployed on the seafloor, reducing vessel time, environmental impact and equipment inventories.

ROAM is a rugged, portable communications link in a box which can operate over satellite or any other available network, such as 4G/5G and vessel Wi-Fi, providing secure access between Sonardyne engineers and any vessel needing remote expert assistance.