Marine-i supports Feritech development of world-first geotechnical subsea vehicle

Marine-i is supporting Feritech Global, in its plan to create the world’s first autonomous subsea vehicle specially designed for geotechnical survey work. Part funded by the European Regional Development Fund, Marine-i aims to help the marine tech sector in Cornwall grow through harnessing the full potential of research and innovation.

Feritech’s Managing Director, Rob Ferris, explains:

“Globally, offshore assets require an increasing number of detailed subsea surveys, which often have to be carried out in extremely challenging sea conditions. This is particularly true for the growing floating offshore wind sector, where installation has to take place in very deep waters.

“Using autonomous vessels to carry out geophysical survey work is an area that is already gaining traction. We now want to design an autonomous solution for geotechnical surveys. Such a vessel would need to be large in size to accommodate equipment for taking core samples of the seabed and for carrying out activities such as cone penetration testing and heat flow testing. Once developed, this new solution would have a global impact in reducing the risks and costs associated with seabed surveys.”

Marine-i and Feritech are collaborating on a structured development programme to define the industry standards that the new vehicle must meet, specify the tool requirements, and create a design solution. This will result in the construction of a pre commercialisation prototype for sea trials.