WASSP Multibeam has launched its new rapid deployment multibeam sounder – the W3 Rapid Deployment System (RDS).
Revealed at Pacific Expo 2019 in Sydney this week, W3 RDS has been designed for Navy’s, Maritime Police and Search & Rescue organisations for use where depths are unknown and to find safe navigation routes for larger vessels.
When a fixed transducer installation in a small vessel such as a tender isn’t always practical, the W3 RDS has been designed around a portable Carbonfibre Mast that includes a transducer, motion sensor and satellite compass. This lets operators deploy the unit over the side or the transom of the vessel into the water quickly and easily often in just minutes.
Once deployed, W3 RDS can quickly and effectively profile the seafloor and water column in search of sunken vessels, aircraft or vehicles. Or it can be utilised in events like cyclones, hurricanes, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes or war disasters which can alter the seafloor in such a way as to make navigation unsafe for support vessels.
When in operation, W3 RDS uses a wireless link or a naval secure communication system to send real-time seafloor map data back to the mothership bridge system and display via a WASSP CDX display software or MaxSea navigation plotting platform – all in real-time.
W3 RDS is designed around the fully digital DRX transceiver and features a low power processor DRX-32 (equivalent to 1kW), with the high-frequency WMB-160 transducer to give operators a maximum depth of 400m.
Designed to be compact, the DRX Processor is housed in a Pelican case to protect it from water damage. The whole system weighs in at just 70kg (including carry cases), making it very portable and giving it the ability to be easily transported by just two people from vessel to vessel, or even helicoptered in if necessary.
“WASSP Multibeam was originally designed to help with the placement of Rock Lobster pots to optimise catch, and since then the technology has found many new markets and opportunities around the world such as hydrographic survey. With recent developments allowing a great mix of performance and portability we are very excited to bring our technology to this new market,” says WASSP Global Sales & Marketing Manager Rufus Whiteford.
WASSP Multibeam has already been used effectively in disaster relief. After the Christchurch earthquake in New Zealand in 2011, there was a need to profile Lyttelton Harbour – paving the way for safe passage of Navy vessels, which were bringing in much-needed supplies and aid. At the time, the underwater survey was undertaken by local commercial fishing boats where it was found that in some places, the seafloor had risen by a staggering seven metres.
WASSP was also used during the salvage of the container ship Rena which ran aground on the Astrolabe Reef on New Zealand’s East Coast in 2011. WASSP was instrumental in helping Rena salvagers quickly survey the surrounding coastline for sunken shipping containers.
Notes to Editors
WAASP Press Office
Phone: +64 0274 960 260
– WASSP, an acronym for Wide Angle Sonar Seafloor Profiler, is a multibeam sonar system manufactured by ENL Group in New Zealand under ISO9001/2000 certification. Research and development of WASSP commenced in 2000 with the first system being sold in 2004.
– WASSP provides high-resolution 3D bottom profiling, 2D bottom profiling, accurate backscatter, dynamic fish detection in the water column, traditional high-resolution commercial echo sounder offering bottom-lock, triple beam and quint beam which can be licensed to suit the individual customers when using the new WASSP DRX. New licensing arrangements are continuing to be developed or enhanced following the VOC (voice of the customer).
WASSP has three core products, utilising the same core technology, aimed at different markets:
- S3 for the Survey market including dredging, dive site profiling, wreck hunting and many other survey activities.
- F3 for the Fishing industry allows the operator to get great detail on the seabed profile and hardness to ensure they are fishing efficiently and effectively in a sustainable way while avoiding rough areas that can damage expensive equipment.
- W3 allows for wireless connection with the WASSP sounder so a tender can survey for safe navigation in advance of the approaching mother ship. The W3 has proven very popular for mega yachts and military applications.
– In addition to its Head Office in Auckland, New Zealand, WASSP has a sales and marketing office in Maldon, Essex in the UK covering EMEA and Americas, and a worldwide network of accredited distributors and dealers.
– Electronic Navigation Ltd (ENL) owns WASSP Ltd, a well-established 74-year old New Zealand company with its HQ based in Auckland, New Zealand and offices in Nelson and Maldon, Essex, UK. Shareholders in ENL include FURUNO Electric Co. Ltd., Japan and the Hodson family. www.wassp.com