9 Nov 2017 – Acoustic Imaging announced as recipient of an Australian Government Test Bed Project for Australia’s new Satellite Based Augmentation System.
Matt Canavan (Minister for Resources and Northern Australia) launched the test projects at an event in Queensland today. In all, 30 projects funded by $12 million dollars were awarded across agriculture, construction, consumer and utilities, spatial and transport industries.
The trial runs for 2-years and is being managed by Geoscience Australia, and Land Information New Zealand in partnership with GMV, Immarsat and Lockheed Martin. The Australian and New Zealand Cooperative Research Centre for Spatial Information (CRCSI) is managing the industry projects lead by Julia Mitchell. “It is great to see interest from a range of sectors ... It really highlights how location technology and spatial information underpins our modern economy,” Julia said.
Acoustic Imaging in collaboration with the Port Authority of NSW (PANSW) will test and demonstrate the effect that improved positioning capability will provide to navigation and pilotage in Sydney Harbour.
Based on international precedent, Australia’s SBAS should equip pilots in Sydney Harbour to guide and berth large vessels faster and closer to the plotted course than with their current methodology which employs GNSS only as a navigation predictor aid to their PPUs. Direct economic benefit would result from greater numbers of container ships and cruise liners safely passing in and out of the harbour daily.
In addition to pilotage activities PANSW is responsible for charting harbour depths. A dense dataset of acoustic sonar data is acquired by small survey vessels and referenced in space as time. Accuracy is the key to ensuring that these charted depths provide pilotage and other harbour users with useful information.
PANSW’s approach to ensuring high quality navigation safety in Australia’s premier harbour provides an ideal platform for controlled testing of SBAS. Acoustic Imaging (AI) is a 20-year-old Australian owned and operated company with a track record of introducing innovative techniques to the maritime industry in Australia and internationally. Acoustic Imaging Lead Scientist and SBAS Pilotage and Navigation Project Manager, Nicole Bergersen, said that ‘Sydney Harbour and the world-class operations of the PANSW Pilotage and Survey Departments present the ideal location for this project. Acoustic Imaging is excited to be part of the testing of Australia’s SBAS and look forward to associating the outcomes of this trial to potential economic benefits for our country’