Subsea Equipment

FORCE chief technician Murray Scotney adjusts cable connectionMANDATORY PUBLISHING CREDIT: Darren Pittman/ImagesEastReliable site data is critical to all aspects of in-stream tidal energy development, including the design, installation, and maintenance of turbines, as well as understanding and measuring any effects on the marine ecosystem.

To better understand the site, FORCE has begun to integrate data from a number of subsea monitoring systems, including two FAST platforms. These instrument platforms provide a clearer, moment-by-moment picture of what’s happening under the water.

FAST-1, at 4.5-tons and 4-metres in length, is designed for frequent deployment and recovery to enable instrument testing at any location throughout the Bay of Fundy.

FAST-2, at 650 kilograms and 3-metres in length, is designed for subsea data cable connection, enabling access to real-time data from the Minas Passage.

The FAST subsea platforms gather data on various environmental characteristics, including:

– current profiles        – turbulence
– fish abundance        – zooplankton abundance
– depth                      – sea floor stability
– temperature            – conductivity
– salinity                    – tide
– particulate matter    – acoustics (passive noise detection)

The platforms are also supported by two subsea data cables, the first of which was installed in December 2013 – in a blizzard!

Video of the subsea data cable deployment (right):