iXblue new global subsea positioning system chosen by leading European institute for geodetic mission off the coast of Sicily

15/01/2019

Brest (France), January 15th, 2019 – iXblue, a global company that provides innovative solutions devoted to navigation, positioning and underwater imaging, has been chosen by the European Institute for Marine Studies (IUEM) to provide 8 Canopus LBL transponders for a major geodetic mission off the coast of Sicily. Deployed on the seabed, 2,500 meters below the surface, the Canopus transponders will measure the crustal deformation along the North-South Alfeo faults with a millimeter-scale resolution over the course of 4 years.

 

“We are very proud to have been chosen by such a leading institute for this major geodetic project.” States Hubert Pelletier, Head of iXblue Acoustic division. “The fact that the IUEM, a long-standing partner of iXblue, trusts our new Canopus transponders for this challenging project is a big vote of confidence. Because the Canopus transponders precisely meet the exacting requirements of such a long-term subsea project, iXblue was chosen to provide autonomous and continuous monitoring of the movements of the tectonic plates along a 2 kilometers segment of the North-South Alfeo faults. Installed on the seafloor along the faults, the transponders will measure, over the course of 4 years, the acoustic distance travel-time from one transponder to another to precisely determine their accurate distance. Thanks to those measurements, the IUEM will then be able to better characterize the way the fault behaves and will gain valuable insight into seismic risks."

 

Enhancing iXblue’s offer in subsea positioning solutions, the Canopus LBL transponder was developed in tight collaboration with major scientific partners. Easy to deploy and to use thanks to its user-friendly MMI (Man-Machine Interface), it is especially suited for scientific and industrial applications that require high autonomy, instrumentation, repeatability and accuracy. Thanks to its hundreds of acoustic codes for interrogation and reply, Canopus can be used in the most complex environments without any acoustic interferences. It features underwater acoustic communication between transponders, transceivers and surface equipment and embeds environmental temperature, pressure, sound velocity and inclinometer sensors. Thanks to its extremely low power consumption (up to 4 years of battery life in listening mode) and intelligent ping management feature, Canopus is perfectly suited for subsea operations such as seafloor Geodesy, subsea monitoring, construction, or subsea mining.

 

“We needed a highly accurate and reliable system able to provide precise measurements over many years” explains Jean-Yves Royer, in charge of the project at the IUEM. “The autonomy provided by the Canopus transponder, along with its ease-of-use and the availability of the iXblue teams during the tests phase were decisive factors in our choice of transponders for this major project.”