• Careers
  • Fugro Global
  • Global

Autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV)

We operate one of the largest fleets of commercial Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs) around the world and have used this technology for some of the most ambitious deepwater surveys.

AUV features 

The AUV offers numerous advantages over other offshore survey platforms. In comparison to towed systems, AUVs provide tight turning circles – greatly reducing the time to change between survey lines. The platform’s inertial navigation system (INS) also adds rigour to the positioning of hazards and features.

Compared to remotely operated vehicles (ROVs), AUVs operate without an umbilical and are able to move faster and more quietly, collecting data at a very high data-to-signal ratio. As a result, surveys are completed sooner and with more accuracy. System features include:

  • Nominal survey speed of 4 knots
  • Inertial navigation system
  • Flexible payload capabilities

To meet your requirements, we work with AUV suppliers to specify technicalities such as: the payload sensor suite used from the multibeam echo sounder, sidescan sonar and sub-bottom profiler, forward looking sonar, turbidity sensor, acoustic Doppler current profiler, conductivity temperature and depth sensor to the camera system.

Whether you work in the oil and gas industry, the utilities sector or government agencies, you can use our AUVs and specialist team to obtain engineering grade high resolution data for deep sea field development and seabed mapping.

Deepwater rated AUVs support surveys are used for deepwater field developments, site clearances, pipeline and cable routes, regional mapping and archaeological surveys.

Shallow water AUVs are used for ports and harbour surveys and useful in the offshore wind sector to hunt for unexploded mines – a major problem for wind farms, which have a far wider seabed footprint than oil and gas platforms.

Our fleet includes Echo Surveyor® and Echo Mapper class vehicles (both rated to 3,000 metres water depth) and shallow water REMUS 100 vehicles, suitable for port and harbour developments.

Our deep water Echo class AUV’s are mobilised either from one of our dedicated fleets of international survey vessels or from third party charter ships.

We combine AUV and conventional survey techniques and link them to efficient onboard processing and reporting systems operated by our skilled and experienced geoscientists.

The development of deep-water hydrocarbon discoveries presents fresh engineering design challenges. AUVs enable survey sensors to be deployed close to the seafloor and produce hydrographic and geophysical survey data of the highest quality and optimum resolution.

For deepwater or remote the planned field development, you can count on our fleet of AUVs to deliver great efficiencies in survey methodology and produce engineering survey data of the highest quality.

Our use of inbuilt Inertial Navigation System (INS) technology adds rigour to the positioning of geo-hazards and seabed features. Surveys can be completed sooner and with greater accuracy, while engineering design is optimised and development project risks are reduced.

The combined length of all line kilometres surveyed by our AUV fleet in the past few years comfortably exceeds the Earth's circumference at the equator five times.

The reach of our fleet is truly global, placing cost-effective leading edge survey data acquisition and processing capability at the disposal of all deepwater operators, no matter how remote the discovery.

Our AUV fleet: 

  • Delivers enormous efficiencies in survey methodology
  • Produces engineering survey data of the highest quality
  • Offers permanently installed, onboard processing and reporting systems
  • Operated by skilled and experienced geoscientists
  • Accurate positioning with onboard inertial navigation system
  • Ensures rapid acquisition of multiple data types
  • Operate at depths that might be prohibitive using traditional methods
  • Offer a very stable, low-noise platform, maintaining a consistent altitude above the seafloor
  • Reduces distortion caused by “fish” motion
  • Highly manoeuvrable, giving optimum survey performance
  • Focuses on data acquisition rather than line turns or lead-in/lead-out line lengths

Enquire about our technology