After using Time / Date Fiobuoys for almost ten years, the Royal Australian Navy's Australian Hydrographic Service has successfully trialled Fiomarine's Acoustic Command model Fiobuoys. After supplying them with six Acoustic models, Fiomarine now hopes the Service will upgrade their entire Fiobuoy fleet.
The Australian Hydrographic Service and Fiomarine
Fiomarine Industries Pty Ltd, manufacturer of the Fiobuoy submersible marine marker buoy and retrieval system, began supplying to the Royal Australian Navy's Australian Hydrographic Service (AHS) in 2000.
The AHS has been using Fiomarine's original Fiobuoy TD100 models which are released at a preprogrammed time and date. Due to government protocol the AHS is required to use at least two methods of recovery for their underwater monitoring instruments. So the Fiobuoys have typically been used in conjunction with another acoustic release system.
Recently the AHS expressed an interest in trialling the newer Fiobuoy AC100 acoustic command models. Two units were trialled this September 2009 in Jervis Bay, New South Wales, Australia.
The Fiobuoys were tested on seven occasions and worked perfectly each time.
Following these successful trials, the AHS ordered six new AC100 Fiobuoys for their operations based out of Cairns, Queensland, Australia. The Hydrographic Support Cell based in Cairns are currently in the process of testing the units.
This further legitimises Fiomarine's technology and the Fiobuoy's design, and gives Fiomarine greater confidence as it tackles the international Oil & Gas and Marine Research markets.
Fiomarine hopes the Acoustic Command Fiobuoys will soon become the AHS' primary means of recovery for their underwater instruments.
What does the Australian Hydrographic Service use Fiobuoys for?
Fiobuoys are used by the AHS predominately for the recovery of bathymetric and oceanographic instruments such as tide gauges and current metres. They are used all around the Australian coastline, with the majority being utilised in Northern waters. Deployments generally last approximately thirty to forty days.
What is a Fiobuoy?
The Fiobuoys are an all-in-one underwater recovery system that incorporate a release, marker, floatation, retrieval line and line storage. They were invented by John Fiotakis, Fiomarine CEO, and originally developed in collaboration with the Australian Defence Department.
The original Fiobuoys are Time / Date models, where the release event is activated at a pre-programmed time and date. Offering increased deployment flexibility is the second Fiobuoy model - Acoustic Command - that offers release on demand.
AHS activities and operations
The Australian Hydrographic Service is both a Commonwealth Government agency as well as an Australian Defence Force (ADF) agency. It is responsible for the publication and distribution of nautical charts and other information required for safe navigation of Australian waters. The AHS also provides operational surveying support and information for ADF operations and exercises.