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Synergies between seabed surveys for engineering and environmental applications – a more efficient approach

Published: Offshore Site Investigation and Geotechnics: Integrated Geotechnologies – Present and Future: Proceedings of the 7th International Conference, 12-14 September 2012, London, UK, Society for Underwater Technology, London

12 Sep 2012
Salisbury, R. and Collins, P.

There has been rapid growth in the requirement for environmental baseline and habitat surveys in the North Sea and elsewhere in the world during recent years, to the extent that these, rather than pre-engineering surveys, are increasingly becoming the main driver for seabed survey work carried out in advance of offshore developments. Seabed surveys for engineering applications and environmental considerations are conventionally treated as separate exercises for planning and data analysis purposes. Different groups of specialists often work independently despite a high degree of overlap between conventional geophysical, seabed sample and photographic datasets. Pre-engineering and environmental surveys have different objectives, but a more integrated approach to survey planning and consideration of preliminary results would lead to efficiencies in data collection and the early identification of constraints. By working more closely together engineering geophysicists and environmental scientists can resolve the apparently contradictory interpretations sometimes made from geophysical and environmental datasets collected from the same area. Confidence in survey results is increased and value is added to both pre-engineering and environmental conclusions.


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