With the continued development of acoustically aided inertial navigation, Sonardyne International Ltd. announces that one of the world’s largest offshore drilling contractors has selected Marksman DP-INS for one of its semi-submersible drilling units.
Installed alongside an incumbent Sonardyne dual LUSBL Dimona system, the addition of acoustically-aided inertial navigation provides two completely independent positioning systems in the event that the GPS is affected by sunspot activity (scintillation) in the region.
DP-INS has been developed to meet regulatory requirements which state that deep water drilling units must be equipped with three independent positioning reference inputs to their DP system. Traditionally, an acoustic positioning system and two separate DGPS systems are used. However, vulnerability remains should the acoustics be affected by aeration and noise and both GPS systems simultaneously affected by signal disruption. The latter is particularly common around equatorial regions and during periods of high solar radiation.
DP-INS combines the complementary characteristics of Sonardyne’s Wideband® 2 acoustic signal technology with high integrity inertial measurements from the system’s Lodestar AHRS/INS core. The resulting output is resilient to acoustic disruptions and completely independent from GPS. In addition to the system’s deep water positioning performance, it also delivers valuable cost savings as it can be used with fewer acoustic transponders deployed on the seabed, significantly reducing set-up time following a vessel’s arrival on location.
Commenting on the deal, Ralph Gall, Technical Sales Manger at Sonardyne Inc. said, “We’re delighted that this major offshore drilling contractor has installed our DP-INS. The independency and redundancy provided by the system delivers improved performance and safety whilst reducing operational costs. Since the installation, we have also received a request for an upgrade from its current Dimona hardware to our latest generation Marksman LUSBL positioning system.”
Press Release, November 01, 2013