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Ocean Business


August 2012 Issue

Ocean Power Technologies, Lockheed Martin To Develop Wave-Energy Project in Australia
Pennington, New Jersey-based Ocean Power Technologies Inc. (OPT) and Lockheed Martin (Bethesda, Maryland) have partnered to develop a 19-megawatt wave-energy project in Portland in the state of Victoria, Australia.

Lockheed Martin will assist with the design of OPT PowerBuoy, lead the production and system integration of the wave-energy converters and support program management. The project leverages a $65.3 million (USD) grant from the Commonwealth of Australia. The project is to be developed by Victorian Wave Partners Pty Ltd. (Melbourne, Australia), owned by Ocean Power Technologies (Australasia) Pty Ltd. (Melbourne).

University of Maryland Makes Recently Ordered REMUS 600 AUV Available for Charter
Horn Point Laboratory at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science has purchased a Hydroid Inc. (Pocasset, Massachusetts) REMUS 600 AUV, which will be available for charter by researchers for studies of coastal and near-coastal environments, Hydroid said in June.

The lab's REMUS 600 will include forward and aft hovering modules, a second onboard payload computer to implement user-developed autonomy algorithms and a nitrate sensor for real-time measurements.

Liquid Robotics, Schlumberger Form Joint Venture To Deploy Wave Gliders in Oil and Gas Industry
Liquid Robotics Inc. (Sunnyvale, California) and Schlumberger (Houston, Texas) in June created Liquid Robotics Oil & Gas (Houston), a joint venture to develop oil and gas industry services using Liquid Robotics' Wave Glider AUVs.

The companies have equal ownership of the joint venture. Liquid Robotics Oil & Gas will provide metrology and oceanography surveillance, containment loss detection, and subsea and broadband communications gateway services.

VCT HarborScan UUV Gets L3-Klein Sonar
A HarborScan UUV, manufactured by Vehicle Control Technologies (VCT) based in Reston, Virginia, equipped with L-3 Klein's (Salem, New Hampshire) UUV 3500 side scan sonar, is now available to the AUV and UUV commercial and military markets, the companies announced in July.

The two-man portable HarborScan has completed acceptance testing with NOAA and is now considered fully operational. Depth-rated to 300 meters, HarborScan is designed for disaster response, coastal surveys, environmental assessments, harbor security, improvised explosive device identification, search and salvage, and hull scanning.

UTEC Survey Opens UK Headquarters in Aberdeen, Takes Delivery of 2nd Gavia AUV
UTEC Survey (Houston, Texas) opened in June an office in Aberdeen, Scotland, to provide services in the North Sea and West Africa and support operations in the Mediterranean and North Africa.

Also in June, UTEC announced it had taken the delivery of a second Gavia AUV from Teledyne Gavia (Kópavogur, Iceland) to be used for commercial survey applications. In 2011, UTEC received its first Gavia AUV and, following successful surveys with the AUV in South America, ordered the second, which was delivered in the first quarter of 2012.

Phoenix International Completes Hull Work On USS Midway, Acquires Bluefin-21 AUV
Phoenix International Holdings Inc. (Largo, Maryland) has completed improvements to the hull integrity of the museum ship USS Midway in San Diego, California, the company announced in July. Phoenix divers used a new American Welding Society-approved wet-welding procedure to patch more than 319 hull openings.

Starting in 2010, work took place each spring. Performing work underwater allowed museum operations to continue while avoiding the large expense of dry-docking. The new wet-welding procedure used a more efficient and readily available electrode able to weld to the higher carbon steel in the Midway's hull. Divers welded 2,098 linear feet of wet welds over 5,300 hours of incident-free bottom time.

Also in July, Phoenix announced it purchased a Bluefin-21 AUV from Bluefin Robotics Corp. (Quincy, Massachusetts). The AUV can operate in depths up to 1,500 meters, which will be extended to 4,500 meters in late 2012.

Massachusetts Firms to Provide Sensors to OOI
Nortek USA (Boston, Massachusetts) and Nobska Development Inc. (Woods Hole, Massachusetts) will supply 3D single-point current meter instruments (VEL3D) to the Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI).

Under a $327,798 contract, Nortek will provide up to 18 Vector acoustic Doppler velocimeters and under a $117,354 contract, Nobska will provide up to nine MAVS4 current meter instruments. The OOI said it expects to start submitting orders for these instruments this year.

Austal Increases Capacity With 3 New Buildings
Austal USA (Mobile, Alabama) in July opened three new buildings at its U.S. headquarters, marking the beginning of full assembly-line production for the Independence-variant littoral combat ships (LCS) and joint high-speed vessels (JHSV), which the U.S. Navy has contracted Austal to build. The buildings include the Module Manufacturing Facility (MMF) Phase 2, Assembly Bay 5 and an office complex.

With 68,750 square meters of manufacturing space, the MMF is capable of constructing six aluminum vessels per year. Assembly Bay 5, measuring 130 meters by 41 meters, is long enough to construct LCS completely inside.

Fugro Begins Survey of 1st US Offshore Wind Farm
Fugro Atlantic (Norfolk, Virginia) has commenced the first phase of a four-part geotechnical and geophysical survey for the U.S.'s first offshore wind farm, Cape Wind, located off Massachusetts, the company announced in July.

The program will involve up to 50 scientists, engineers, archeologists and geologists using specialized vessels.

SNK Places Order for Second ISE ROV
International Submarine Engineering Ltd. (Port Coquitlam, Canada), or ISE, received in July an order for another HYSUB ROV from SNK Ocean Co. Ltd. (Tokyo, Japan). Delivery is scheduled for March 2013.

SNK, which purchased its first ISE ROV in 2010, has ordered a 100-horsepower ROV rated to 2,000 meters depth. The new ROV, outfitted to assist biological studies, will include six thrusters, support for six lights, eight cameras, Imagenex Technology Corp. (Port Coquitlam) sonar, a collection basket that has a hydraulic door with the skid, a tether management system and ISE's control system, ACE.

Lockheed Martin MS2 Cuts Workforce by 740
Lockheed Martin's (Bethesda, Maryland) Mission Systems & Sensors (MS2) business cut 308 jobs in July. This follows a voluntary layoff program that took place in May and resulted in 432 employees voluntarily leaving.

The combined reduction in workforce is about 740 employees, or 5 percent. The MS2 business, which works on programs such as the U.S. littoral combat ships, the Marlin AUV, and wave and tidal energy programs, will have approximately 12,500 employees across the U.S.

Subsea Robotic Geotechnical Site Investigation Company Formed by Gregg Marine, Fugro
Gregg Marine Inc. (Moss Landing, California) and Fugro Offshore Geotechnics (Houston, Texas) created in July a joint venture, Seafloor Geotec LLC (Moss Landing), which will provide an enhanced seabed-based drilling and soil testing capability to 3,000 meters water depth.

Seafloor Geotec will own and operate several seabed piezocone penetration test (PCPT) systems and portable drilling rigs. The company has planned an aggressive equipment build program, beginning with Seafloor Drill System No. 2, which will be rated to 4,000 meters seawater and feature real-time wireline logging, PCPT testing and a drilling capability up to 150 meters under the seabed.

Merrick Opens Oslo Subsidiary
Merrick (Houston, Texas) established in July a wholly owned subsidiary, Merrick Norway AS (Oslo, Norway).

Merrick Norway is the first in a network of offices that are scheduled to open soon in Calgary, Canada; Bogota, Colombia; and Singapore.

LinkQuest Supplies 500 Acoustic Modems for Offshore Oil, Seabed Seismic Monitoring Projects
LinkQuest Inc. (San Diego, California) has produced more than 500 long-range deepwater acoustic modems, the company said in July. UWM2000 and UWM4000 modems were selected for communication between surface ships or platforms and downhole tools in offshore oil projects. Several dozens of UWM2000H omnidirectional and directional acoustic modems were selected for monitoring FPSO sensors.

3D Sonar Bought by T&T Marine Salvage
T&T Marine Salvage Inc. (Galveston, Texas) purchased in July an Echoscope and F180 series system from CodaOctopus (Edinburgh, Scotland). The sale follows on-project system trials in Texas and Kentucky, where T&T Marine was named salvage contractor after the collision of the vessel Delta Mariner with the Eggner Ferry Bridge.


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