Specialised in the design and manufacture of robotic systems ECA Group produces innovative and high tech unmanned and autonomous vehicles for the Hydrographic and Oceanographic area. These autonomous underwater vehicles offer enormous capabilities such as measuring the ocean’s vital signs of temperature and conductivity to better understand storms and the role of the ocean in climate change. They are particularly useful where long duration measurements and observations are required.
They can operate both in shallow and deep water and offer flexibility and speed of operation. They are an effective means of measuring and characterising oceans, seas, coastal areas and maritime routes as well as predicting changes over time.
Since designing the first unmanned underwater vehicle capable of diving to 6,000 metres to conduct photographic and bathymetric survey of the seabed, ECA Group has developed an array of advanced systems designed for bathymetric surveys, seabed mapping and marine geology.
Operating either from specially designed surface vehicles or on their own these modular systems can modify payload and sensors according to customer and mission. Equipped with either Side Scan Sonar, Multi-beam Echo Sounder or Sub bottom profiler or a combination they deliver high resolution images for identification and classification, sediment analysis and bathymetry. With this capability comes an advanced processing facility managing data such as underwater images and sonar signals. This leads to a wide range of applications from subsea cartography, bathymetry, to chemical and nuclear mapping.
Until relatively recently AUV Hyrographic and oceanographic use had been limited to a specific number of dedicated tasks due to limitations in technology. With the development of more advanced processing capabilities and high yield power supplies ECA Group systems are now being used for more and more tasks with their roles and missions constantly evolving.
Equipped with different sensors they are adapted to particular missions such as confined area inspection, seafloor and Hydrographic survey, high resolution and image acquisition, seismic survey and sediment analysis. Their application is particularly relevant in the Oil & Gas industry where they are employed to make detailed maps of the seafloor before the start of subsea infrastructure construction. This allows Subsea Industries to conduct precise surveys of areas where traditional bathymetric surveys would be less effective or prohibitively expensive.
All AUVs in the range are tuned with data-acquisition and post-processing software providing an additional enhanced capacity.
Another highly efficient system is ECA Group’s Unmanned Surface Vehicle for shallow & very shallow water survey, littoral & inshore Hydrographic & oceanographic surveys and harbour and Offshore assets surveys. These greatly increase operational effectiveness due to the high navigation accuracy, increased endurance and overall reliability.
In a high tech evolving environment ECA Group’s specialised team deliver a range of capable unmanned systems that are used for a variety of Hydrographic and Oceanographic missions in the marine domain. From dedicated Hydrographic and Oceanographic applications such as mapping to commercial Hydrography in support of the Oil and Gas Industry these systems are a viable alternative to manned vessels. With this capability ECA Group is making a significant contribution to the study of the oceans and the development of Energy areas worldwide.