Fugro has undertaken successful trials of its new GeoWing, a system designed to detect low-ferrous content unexploded ordnance (UXO — bombs) in challenging marine environments. The new system is especially beneficial for sub-sea construction projects, such as wind farms and cable route developments, particularly in magnetically ‘noisy’ marine environments and areas affected by strong tidal currents.
The magnetic signature from small items of UXO can often be masked by the magnetic signature of other sources, such as the background geology. Fugro’s solution is the GeoWing, a fixed gradiometer array consisting of five magnetometers mounted behind an ROTV. The Fugro GeoWing detects variations in vertical and transverse magnetic gradient which allows removing the ferrous signature from background geology and motion noise.
The use of this new system reduces the number of false positive readings and the number of potential UXO targets that need a closer investigation. This will significantly reduce costs for clients and allow more opportunity to re-position subsequent seabed operations away from any potential ordnance items.
Dr Anne Chabert, Chief Geophysicist at Fugro EMU, was keen to emphasize the benefits of the system and the ease with which it can be deployed. “The GeoWing can be operated at up to six knots and offers a cost-effective solution for the detection of relatively small UXO,” she explained during a recent presentation at the Hydrographic Society UK’s UXO conference in Southampton, UK.
Fugro is currently deploying the new GeoWing system on projects in Europe, the Baltic and southern North Sea, with high demand anticipated among clients planning cable routes, pipelines, and offshore renewable projects.
Filed Under: Offshore wind