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October 2011 Issue
Fugro Purchases Six Saab Seaeye ROVs
The subsea services business line of Fugro has purchased four Lynx and two Panther XT ROV systems from Saab Seaeye (Hampshire, England), a nearly £5 million order that was announced in August. The vehicles will be part of the Fugro ROV fleet, providing specialist ROV and subsea engineering capabilities.
In addition to these six new systems, Fugro has also updated three of its earlier generation Saab Seaeye ROV systems to the latest specifications and standards. The new systems will operate from Fugro's fleet of specialist support vessels or from an end-customer's platform. For more information, visit www.seaeye.com.
Nautilus Granted License, Works to Raise $100M
Nautilus Minerals Inc. (Toronto, Canada) in August became the first private sector company to be granted offshore exploration licenses in Fiji. In September, the company began selling $100 million in stock to fund the purchase of a seafloor resource production system.
The Fijian government granted Nautilus Minerals 14 special prospecting licences, covering about 60,000 square kilometers of what the company said was a "highly prospective" area.
In its efforts to raise capital, the company sold in September about 28 million shares, raising 98.1 million Canadian dollars. Nautilus planned to sell 11 million more shares in October. The seafloor resource production system will initially be deployed at Nautilus' first deepwater copper and gold project at Solwara 1 off Papua New Guinea.
As a result of the capital raising, Nautilus reinstated a contract for the supply of a riser and lifting system, which will transport material from the seafloor to a production support vessel. The contract, with a target cost of $115 million, is with Technip USA Inc. (Theodore, Alabama). It is the final contract to be reinstated following the partial suspension of the Solwara 1 project in December 2008. For more information, visit www.nautilusminerals.com.
Seatronics Adds Six EdgeTech Sonars to Rental Pool
Seatronics (Aberdeen, Scotland) recently purchased $434,000 of EdgeTech (West Wareham, Massachusetts) side scan sonar equipment, adding six systems to its rental pool.
The purchase, announced in August, was for two EdgeTech 4125 side scan sonars, two EdgeTech 4200 side scan sonars and two EdgeTech 2000-DSS towed/ROV side scan and sub-bottom profiling system.
Calling EdgeTech "by far the leading manufacturer in underwater sonar systems used in the offshore survey industry," Seatronics Managing Director David Currie said the equipment purchase would offer its customers the most up-to-date equipment.
For more information, visit www.seatronics-group.com.
Safety at Sea Ltd. Merges With Brookes Bell LLP
Brookes Bell LLP (Liverpool, England) and Safety at Sea Ltd. (Glasgow, Scotland) announced in August that the two companies have merged. Under the deal, Safety at Sea became part of the Brookes Bell Group. Five directors at Safety at Sea have become partners of Brookes Bell, joining the existing 18 partners. For more information, visit www.brookesbell.com.
First Vessel-to-FPSO Personnel Transfer Completed
Offshore Solutions BV (IJmuiden, Netherlands) in August announced the successful completion of the first personnel transfer between a vessel and a floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel.
Over seven weeks in July and August, Offshore Solution's heave-activated offshore access system, mounted on the MS Stril Explorer, successfully transferred personnel between Shell Expro's (Aberdeen, Scotland) Anasuria FPSO. The company said 24 operational connections were made with a total of 294 individual crossings. The transfers took place about 175 kilometers east of Aberdeen.
The offshore access system used on this contract was also the first to incorporate the free-standing modification, which allows it to be mounted on a skid. Offshore Solutions said this modification enables the system to be quickly installed on a host vessel. For more information, visit www.offshore-solutions.nl.
Best Practices Against Piracy Gets an Update
The fourth edition of the "Best Management Practices for Protection against Somalia Based Piracy" was released in August, providing updates on three fundamental requirements, an aide-memoire for company planning and expanded guidance on the use of security contractors.
Supported by the major shipping associations, the Best Management Practices provides information designed to help shipping companies, ship's masters and crew to fully prepare their ship for transit through high-risk areas in order to avoid, deter or delay piracy attacks. The free edition is available at http://bit.ly/r9DNv4.
Sonardyne Sells First Lodestar GyroUSBL
CSA International Inc. (Stuart, Florida) became the first company to purchase Sonardyne International Ltd.'s (Yateley, England) new "calibration-free" Lodestar GyroUSBL acoustic positioning system, Sonardyne said in August.
The GyroUSBL integrates Sonardyne's Lodestar attitude and heading reference system and sixth-generation ultrashort baseline transceiver into a single unit. This coupling largely removes any sensor offsets between the two units. The Lodestar GyroUSBL was supplied to CSA as part of a Sonardyne Ranger 2 positioning system and was installed in an over-the-side deployment pole fitted to the offshore supply vessel HOS Sweetwater. For more information, visit www.sonardyne.com.
Offshore Wind Farm Cable Market Gets New ROV
Pharos Offshore Group Ltd. (Shotts, Scotland) announced in August that it had started construction of a newly designed ROV specifically for the offshore wind farm cable market.
The 800-horsepower interturbine array trencher, the ITAT 800, is a self-propelled trenching ROV. The device will use water-jetting technology to cut the seabed, which the company said is safer than using a metal plough or mechanical cutter around valuable power cables. The water jets "fluidize" the seafloor material and allow the interconnecting power cables of a wind farm to sink in up to three meters deep, Pharos said.
The company said it plans to sell and lease multiple vehicles to serve Round 3 wind farm projects in the U.K. and upcoming projects in North America. For more information, visit www.pharosoffshoregroup.com.
Tenth Smart Buoy Deployed in Cheseapeake Bay
AXYS Technologies Inc. (Sidney, Canada) deployed its 10th smart buoy into the NOAA Chesapeake Bay Interpretive Buoy System in August. The 1.7-meter-diameter AXYS WatchKeeper buoy was deployed near Virginia Beach, Virginia. It transmits near-real-time data on winds, air and water temperature, barometric pressure, waves, currents and water quality. For more information, visit www.axystechnologies.com.
FROG Gets Cold-Weather Protection Pod
Reflex Marine (Truro, England) released in August a safety accessory for the FROG personnel transfer system. The accessory, the Arctic Thermal Pod, is designed to combat exposure to wind chill while performing crane transfers.
The pod is stored within the FROG-6 personnel transfer device and can be deployed in the event of a mid-transfer interruption. It is made from heat-retaining Kevlar and flame-retardant PVC to provide a clear view. It is stored behind the seat assembly of the FROG-6 and is activated by pulling a lanyard and tucking the cover under the feet and sides. For more information, visit www.reflexmarine.com.
Five Companies Come Under Proserv Brand
Proserv Technology, Proserv Offshore, Hydrafit Subsea, Gilmore Valve and Argus Subsea have been restructured into a new organization, with global headquarters located in Aberdeen, Scotland.
In June, a new financing arrangement was completed for $115 million, which allowed the companies to merge into a single entity. As one company, Proserv said it will focus on maximizing recovery, minimizing costs and enhancing sustainability for its clients. Proserv said it employs about 850 people in more than 20 operating centers based in 10 countries, with annual revenue in the region of $200 million. For more information, visit www.proserv-group.com.
Gael Force Launches SeaLimpet Mooring Device
Gael Force Group (Inverness, Scotland) announced in September a floating gravity-based mooring device for the subsea and renewables sectors.
The SeaLimpet, a cylindrical concrete structure with in-built chambers, can be flooded with water or evacuated using compressed air, allowing it to be floated while towing to position and then flooded to sink. Because it can be floated into position using nonspecialist vessels, it avoids the need for heavy transportation ships and cranes.
Gael Force said in September it had secured a $1.5 million contract with Ocean Power Technologies (Pennington, New Jersey) for three 460-tonne SeaLimpets. For more information, visit www.gaelforcegroup.co.uk.
Planet Ocean to Provide Buoy Data for Olympics
Buoys from Planet Ocean Ltd. (Surrey, England) will provide real-time meteorological and wave data directly to the organizers of the 2012 Olympics via satellite, the company announced in September.
Data will come from its three-meter-diameter DB-300-ODAS Ocean Data Buoy, presently deployed in Weymouth Bay, which carries a Watchman-500 instrumentation system with Iridium telemetry and a TRIAXYS directional wave sensor, both supplied by AXYS Technologies Inc. (Sidney, Canada). The dual-channel system duplicates all electronics and sensors with the exception of the wave sensor. For more information, visit www.planet-ocean.co.uk.
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