USV-based offshore wind inspection solution gets $3 million boost

Canada’s Ocean Supercluster is allocating around $3 million for a project to develop an uncrewed surface vessel (USV) based subsea inspection solution for offshore wind farms.

With a total project value of nearly $6.7 million, the Autonomous Remote Offshore Wind Inspection, Navigation and Deployment (AROWIND) Project will provide a prevailing ocean sector concept that is autonomous and remotely operates subsea surveys.

According to Canada’s Ocean Supercluster, this ocean solution presents an opportunity for Canadian companies to commercialize a remote and autonomous inspection solution for offshore wind inspection that reduces vessel costs and the number of personnel on-board.

For the project, Voyis will work with Canadian companies Deep Trekker and HydroSurv Unmanned Survey and international partners EIVA, Sonardyne, and Saipem.

The project is expected to create 55 new direct jobs and an estimated 275 indirect jobs.

“We are excited to announce this Ontario-led project which will develop an innovative solution that will not only respond to the growing demand for more inspection capabilities globally, but is also building strong cross-sectoral partnerships, creating new economic opportunity, and new jobs in Canada,” said Kendra MacDonald, CEO of Canada’s Ocean Supercluster.

AROWIND is one of five projects with a total value of nearly $29 million that the Ocean Supercluster is supporting. A further $4.4 million is being allocated for a project to address outdated domain awareness and communications technologies to prepare for, respond to and recover from marine oil spill hazards and other environmental emergencies.

The Coastal Incident Management System (CIMS) Project will provide coastal, indigenous, and remote communities a cost-effective rapid response package, including a mobile command, control and communications system, data analysis tool and mobile incident platform for marine emergencies.

Shift Environmental will work with a pan-Canadian team including T’Sou-ke Nation, Saab Technologies, BlueNode, the Canadian Coast Guard, Western Canada Marine Response Corporation (WCMRC) and the National Indigenous Fisheries Institute.

The packaged solution includes communications software and hardware, novel response equipment, procedures and training and uncrewed surface vessel and aerial vehicle designs for spill detection, immediate response, and persistent monitoring.

It is expected to address marine emergency incident command and response’s two critical gaps – sense-making and communication between responders and timely spill assessment and response capability in remote and nearshore locations globally.

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