iXBlue has sold two GAPS pre-calibrated USBL systems and a PHINS 6000 inertial navigation system to Ashtead Technology, one of the world's leading equipment rental companies focused on the offshore oil & gas, environmental monitoring and industrial inspection industries.
GAPS (Global Acoustic Positioning System) is designed for high-accuracy tracking of ROVs, AUVs, divers and sonar or other towed systems. It can be used in a wide range of water depths, but performs particularly well in shallow, acoustically noisy waters. The units have their own internal inertial navigation system, which is pre-calibrated with the USBL before delivery to clients. This removes the need for a USBL calibration every time the system is mobilised.
PHINS 6000 is a subsea INS that provides position, true heading, attitude, speed and heave data. The highly accurate inertial measurement unit is coupled with an embedded digital signal processor that runs an advanced Kalman filter.
Mark Derry, Ashtead's offshore managing Director said: "Our customers are drawn to both GAPS and PHINS for their versatility, ease of use and very low maintenance requirements. These are key features in the equipment rental business; they benefit both ourselves and our customers."
Fiona Mackenzie, iXBlue regional sales manager, said: "Our close relationship with Ashtead provides valuable feedback on which to base our technology development. We are constantly being told that end-users are looking for equipment solutions that work in demanding situations. This requirement governs a lot of our thinking."
Ashtead Technology supported iXBlue's on-water demonstrations at Ocean Business 2011 in Southampton by providing of one of their GAPS systems. iXBlue's survey boat, the FPV Morven, will be carried out several cruises each day on the 5th- 7th April to demonstrate GAPS' superior performance in shallow water. The boat also carried a ROVINS-DVL inertial navigation system and an ECHOES 5000 sub-bottom profiler.