Fugro has deployed two new autonomous environmental landers off the coast of Saudi Arabia to collect oceanographic data in deep and remote areas of the Red Sea. The yearlong effort is being performed in collaboration with King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) to better understand the local ecosystem and support Saudi Vision 2030, the country’s social and economic framework for a sustainable future.
The KAUST Red Sea programme represents Fugro’s first use of the new lander technology in the Middle East. Built in partnership with philanthropic and commercial investment organisation Ocean Data Solutions (ODS), the deepwater landers are a cost-effective, reusable and reconfigurable platform, making them ideal for obtaining large volumes of oceanographic data in waters that are historically understudied. The landers can host multiple sensors to monitor and measure a variety of environmental parameters for months at a time in water depths of 10 m to 6000 m.
Remarking on the Red Sea deployment, ODS President Katherine Hall said: “ODS was founded on the belief that a healthy ocean determines our global capability to sustain healthy populations, robust economies, and our future on this planet. A known and healthy ocean is needed to understand and mitigate challenges like sea-level rise and food security, and to scale-up solutions for renewable ocean energy and sustainable aquaculture, among others. We are confident that our partnership with Fugro on the deepwater lander programme and the collaboration with KAUST will allow us to make deeper impacts and contributions to our mission.”
Youssef Atmani, Regional Metocean Manager for Fugro also commented: “We value this strategic collaboration with ODS and KAUST, as the autonomous technology moves Fugro closer to our goal of safe and efficient operations in support of clean energy projects, more sustainable infrastructure and climate resilience. We believe the efficiencies of our new deepwater lander systems will help unlock a new era of ocean data collection, strengthening our contributions to a safe and liveable world.”