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January 2011 Issue

ClassNK and NMRI to Cooperate on R&D For GHG Reduction,
Renewable Offshore Energy

Japan's National Maritime Research Institute (NMRI) and ClassNK (Tokyo, Japan) signed an agreement in December for a cooperative research program that could lead to lower emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs).

The agreement established a framework for comprehensive cooperation and joint research and development (R&D) on reducing GHG emissions, the strength of hull structures, renewable offshore energy and marine engineering training programs. The organizations have previously exchanged research staff for a number of years and cooperated on a project-by-project basis. For more information, visit www.classnk.or.jp.

CDL Delivers First Two TOGS-NAV Systems to SMD
The first two deliveries of CDL's (Aberdeen, Scotland) TOGS-NAV were received in October at Soil Machine Dynamics' (SMD) headquarters in Wallsend, England. The systems were delivered on an accelerated schedule as part of a major contract awarded to CDL earlier this year, the largest yet for the new TOGS-NAV system.

SMD specified the TOGS-NAV system as a standard fit to each of 20 QX-Ultra work-class remotely operated vehicles (ROVs), which will be delivered to Subsea 7's (George Town, Cayman Islands) i-Tech division in the next 18 months.

"The decision by both Subsea 7 and SMD to commit to the TOGS-NAV system for this contract is welcome justification for the effort and inward investment CDL have made in recent years in developing the next generation of navigation systems for the subsea oil and gas industry," said Kevin McBarron, managing director at CDL. For more information, visit www.cdltd.net.

HAARI and SUASIS Enter Strategic and Technological Alliance
Fuyang, China-based Hangzhou Applied Acoustics Research Institute (HAARI) and SUASIS Underwater Systems (Gebze, Turkey) signed an agreement in October to enter into a strategic and technological alliance to improve the competitiveness of their products.

Through the alliance, the companies said they will promote international cooperation for the development of new systems and work to improve their products' competitiveness in international markets. Products and services will be brought to market under the brand SUASIS-HAARI Under?water Silk Road. For more information, visit www.715.com.cn.

Ocean Signal Appoints French Distributor
Ocean Signal Ltd. (Margate, England) has appointed Furuno France (Merignac, France) to handle its distribution throughout France, Ocean Signal announced in November.

"We are confident that the product range we are launching in Paris will attract considerable interest due to its market-leading design and functionality," said Antoine Poitevin of Furuno France's yachting division. For more information, visit www.oceansignal.com.

EU-Recognized Maritime Organizations Establish Company to Certify Safety, Quality
The classification societies that are authorized to work for European Union (EU) maritime administrations founded in November a community interest company responsible for the quality assessment and continued certification of the EU-recognized organizations.

The company, the Entity for the Quality Assessment and Certification of Organizations Recognized by the European Union (QACE), has been established with headquarters in London, England.

QACE has elected a board responsible for the oversight of its activities, made up of five members: Klaus Grensemann, Hiroshi Iwamoto, Victor M. Santos-Pedro, Dean Tsereto?poulos and Francis Vallat. The group said the establishment of QACE can be expected to lead to improvements in the delivery of classification services, benefitting member societies' clients and improving maritime safety.

Pirate Activity Up in Indian Ocean and East Africa, Down in Gulf of Aden, Says Security Consultant
Anti-piracy and maritime security consultancy firm Drum Cussac (Dorset, England) said that from September to November, piracy activity in the Gulf of Aden dropped dramatically, while activity in the Indian Ocean and along the east coast of Africa has collectively increased by nearly 60 percent, reaching an all-time high.

"Just in the last couple of weeks we have seen numerous pirate action groups operating in the northern Somali basin," David Pickard, head of maritime at Drum Cussac, said in early December. "This means ship operators in the region may need to consider adjusting their routes and tactics accordingly." For more information, visit www.drum-cussac.com.

Seafloor Systems Adds More RESON Products to Rental Pool
Seafloor Systems Inc. (Cameron Park, California) recently added a number of RESON (Slangerup, Denmark) products to its rental pool. The new products include two RESON SeaBat 7101-SV high-resolution shallow-water multibeam echosounder systems, a RESON SeaBat 8160 portable midwater multibeam echosounder and an Applanix (Ontario, California) Wavemaster inertial navigation system. For more information, visit www.seafloorsystems.com.

Kevlar Balloons Developed by BMT-Led Consortium Could Rescue Sinking Vessels
Damaged vessels at risk of sinking could soon benefit from a new system that uses Kevlar reinforced balloons. The ballons can be rapidly inflated to provide extra buoyancy, expelling water and keeping the vessel afloat until repairs or other emergency measures are implemented.

The system is being developed by a consortium led by BMT Group Ltd. (London, England) that consists of research?ers from nine European companies. The project, the Surfacing System for Ship Recovery, was inspired by submarine rescue technology from ASTRIUM (Paris, France) and ideas proposed by BALance Technology Consulting (Bremen, Germany)

Using technology originally developed for submarine rescue, the team is developing a system that can be used in a wide range of maritime applications. These include salvage, emergency subdivision of roll-on/roll-off ferry car decks, self-righting buoyancy for fishing vessels in the event of a capsize, and emergency buoyancy to stabilize ships with holed compartments.

The research team is using a €2.65 million grant from the European Commission to carry out the research. For more information, visit www.bmt.org.

Swathe Services Announces its First U.K. SONIC 2024 Echosounder Sale
Swathe Services (Saltash, England) announced in November its first U.K. sale of R2Sonic's (Santa Barbara, California) SONIC 2024 wideband high-resolution shallow-water multibeam echosounder.

Swathe Services added the SONIC 2024 to its rental pool of survey equipment in June. Soon after it was made available, a major U.K. survey company contracted the system, and that company's contract has now extended beyond three months and appears likely to continue to the end of the year. This client used the SONIC 2024 throughout this rental period and then ordered a complete SONIC 2024 system, including a Valeport Ltd. (Devon, England) Mini SVS. For more information, visit www.swathe-services.com.

Safe Use of Electricity Under Water Code of Practice Published by IMCA
Preventing the dangerous hazards that may arise from the use of electricity underwater is discussed in "Code of Practice for the Safe Use of Electricity Under Water," a new publication from the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA).

The code covers all types of electrical equipment used by a diver either under his or her control or the control of the diving support team. The code (IMCA D 045) also covers any electrical equipment or supply that the diver may use or that is in the vicinity.

The code considers the risks arising from the various environments encountered and makes recommendations for the selection, installation and maintenance of electrical apparatuses used to achieve an adequate level of safety. For more information, visit www.imca-int.com.

Optech Acquires Second Photogrammetric Camera Company
Optech Inc. (Ontario, Canada) announced in December that it has acquired the operations and assets of Rochester, New York-based Geospatial Systems Inc. (GSI).

Optech said that GSI has a recognized track record in the design and manufacture of ruggedized, high-precision metric imaging systems for airborne applications, including many implementations with Optech's lidar systems. Optech said its clients will now benefit from the full integration of GSI's TerraPix systems with Optech's solutions.

Optech said it will maintain GSI's current product line and evolve the GSI products to meet their needs. Leveraging GSI's existing engineering staff, GSI's Rochester location will become Optech's base for imaging systems development. The location will also be expanded to serve as the base for U.S. sales and support for Optech.

Max Elbaz, president and chief executive officer of GSI, will continue in his current position and will lead Optech's expansion in the U.S. commercial and airborne intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance markets. For more information, visit www.optech.ca.


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