Page 25: of Marine Technology Magazine (November 2015)

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MARIN Uses WFS Wireless

Data Link in Sub Tests

MARIN’s Seakeeping and Maneuvering basin in Wa- geningen, the Netherlands, is one of seven model testing facilities used for testing scale models of both surface and underwater vehicles. The basin measures 170m x 40m x 5m, with state-of-the-art wave makers and wave absorbers offering the capability to test a vehicle in uni- and multi- directional waves from various directions.

The purpose of tests in the basin is to quantify and dem- onstrate the behavior and performance of a vessel under particular conditions. Each vessel goes through an exten- sive series of tests and re? nements to ensure that its physi- cal characteristics are all optimized to produce the desired results.

MARIN approached WFS with a requirement for a wire- less data link to allow communications to and from (mov- ing) underwater vessels in its Seakeeping and Maneuver- ing basin. The wireless data link would be used to control the vehicle in the tank at up to seven meters range, and also to retrieve data from the onboard instrumentation to optimize behavior and performance.

The solution was delivered using a broadband data link from the seatooth family of subsea wireless instruments from WFS, enabling a high rate of data to be transmitted over a short range, underwater. seatooth can provide a reli- able wireless communications link in the most challenging subsea environments: • In shallow water or turbid water • In the presence of bubbles or contaminants • Near to large subsea structures • Through ground, seabed, concrete and non- metallic structures

For testing of moving underwater vessels, a hard wired method of communication (and control) is not practical.

Wires between a free sailing vessel and a monitoring sys- tem will also introduce extra drag which is both undesired in testing and will affect the accuracy of the test results. A wireless link like seatooth enables continuous monitoring for safety and ef? ciency and is preferable because it pro- vides both continuous information and the opportunity to intervene on a real-time basis if required. “Real-time wireless underwater communications is a key factor in ef? cient and accurate testing of model scale submarines,” says Haite van der Schaaf, Project Manager,

Measurement & Control Systems at MARIN. “We hope that in the future, we will be able to use seatooth wireless technology in numerous projects at MARIN’s test facili- ties.

MTR #9 (18-33).indd 25 12/8/2015 11:47:58 AM

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