A pilot project to carry out underwater survey and inspection services at a German offshore wind farm have been hailed a success.

The Autonomous Surveyor USV on its way to a survey mission

 A. on its way to a mission

Wind farm owner Power and marine technology firm Europe Subsea Services have just finished the project, which applied uncrewed surface vessels () and autonomous underwater vehicles () to inspect the Offshore Wind Farm in the German North Sea.

Europe Subsea Services’  Autonomous Surveyor was used to carry out multi-beam surveying and following deployment from a mother ship Service Operations Vessel (SOV), the A.Ikanbilis, a hovering AUV, conducted scour and marine growth surveys.

“The so-called ‘mother ship concept’ was proven successful throughout the pilot, with seamless integration of the various teams and equipment working aboard the Albert Betz SOV, resulting in a wider weather window for marine survey and underwater inspection operations, with launch and recovery up to Sea State 3 and data acquisition according to the specific requirements,” said Europe Subsea Services.

“Our goal is to utilise assets that are already in place within the offshore wind farm O&M framework to improve the availability of marine data and significantly reduce the cost of acquiring it,” said Soren Themann, Europe Subsea Services CEO.

The company said the combined AUV/USV model would be available for commercial deployment by early next year, 2024.