Objectives of the service
Image credit: eOdyn
The product suite of the eOdyn Seawaze Offshore demo project is called SeaOps and serves offshore energy developers, contractors as well as shipping and towing companies.
When venturing at sea, these companies rely on high safety factors yet weather-related accidents still happen. This is chiefly because decision making processes are putted at risk by incomplete information. Measurement at sea being an expensive and inherently patchy asset. So, models are used to fill the gaps, but it cannot be more accurate than the measurements it is based on. The industry requires dependable and extensive observations about ocean currents and sea states. This is presently curbing its safety and efficiency when operating at sea.
That is why eOdyn delivers SeaOps, a SaaS decision support tool, onboard vessels and for desktop studies. The services is based on eOdyn’s Omni-Situ technology, measuring ocean dynamics in real-time and virtually anywhere through machine learning methods. eOdyn's algorithms mine into marine traffic information (Satellite AIS data) to measure surface currents and sea states globally without deploying any sensor.
Users and their needs
SeaOps by eOdyn service is dedicated to companies involved in marine operations: offshore energy developers, contractors as well as shipping and towing companies.
End users involved in the Demo Project are EOLFI, SAIPEM and TOTAL: an offshore wind developer, an offshore contractor and an integrated energy company. These users were also involved in the Feasibility Study the Demo Project is based on.
These companies venture offshore for oil & gas as well as fixed and floating offshore wind projects. They prospect, explore, develop, design, install, produce and decommission. Involved users within these companies are metocean experts, engineering departments, marine operation staffs and IT support staff.
These users need following aspects for safe and effective marine operations:
- Capturing typical and extreme environmental conditions to plan operations upfront
- Gaining visibility on coming surface currents conditions just before operation execution
- Monitoring surface currents evolution during execution
- Being notified when extreme conditions are foreseen and reached, such as strong currents, eddies or solitons.
Typical solutions regarding oceanic currents, rely on model-based forecast as well as extremely local in-situ measurement. None of these means provide reliable information with appropriate spatial and temporal coverage. This is the gap SeaOps by eOdyn intends to fill.
Targeted users are based worldwide although most headquarters are based in Europe, US and Asia. Operations areas are spread all over the oceans, such as offshore Africa, Gulf of Mexico, Latin America, Mediterranean or China Sea.
Service/ system concept
Main goal for SeaOps by eOdyn is to provide appropriate insights to make decisions about critical marine operations. The service is used from bidding phase up to operation execution, including design and planning.
SeaOps by eOdyn features:
- eOdyn surface currents visualisation along with other metocean data layers from the Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service (wind, wave, sea surface temperature, chlorophyll…)
- Mesoscale ocean surface currents processes detection and tracking, such as eddies and solitary waves
- Time series and statistics extraction
- Vessel traffic information
It can be used to define appropriate weather windows for operations such as drilling, ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicle), diving support, installation (lifting, floatover…). For example, to avoid launching a ROV just before strong currents hit operation area, that would risk breaking tether cable and losing the ROV. Most targeted situations are related to the occurrence of high frequency and highly energetic ocean processes such as eddies, meanders and solitons. Mariners onboard vessels can visualise currents surrounding operation area in real-time. The size of visible area is such that ocean processes can be spotted several hours before hitting the vessel. Events are directly spotted by vessel crew.
The service is provided through following infrastructure:
Presented infrastructure includes the eObox, a device deployed onboard vessels to deliver premium service. The eObox is not part of the Demo Project and will be deployed afterwards. It allows for standalone operations and higher spatiotemporal resolution measurement based on locally recorded AIS messages.
Space Added Value
SeaOps by eOdyn is based on information coming from several space assets. Service’s core, Omni-Situ measurement, is based on AIS data mainly provided by satellite (Sat-AIS).
Omni-Situ system turns a communication system, AIS, into an ocean observation system. The AIS system is relying on GNSS satellites to define vessels position. AIS from satellites, Sat-AIS, is the only solution providing unlimited offshore coverage. It is currently available through various commercial satellite data providers. More Sat-AIS players may also develop data service provisions.
Service is broadcasted onboard vessels through their own VSAT providers.
Geostrophic currents derived from altimetry satellite is well-understood information, complementing Omni-Situ measurement. Altimetry data is presently collected by Sentinel-3A & B as well as Jason 2 & 3. Jason-CS/Sentinel 6 programme guarantees availability for the coming years. Information is mainly made available through Copernicus Programme on European side and NESDIS/NOAA on US side.
The Demo Project initiated with the identification of the user needs and requirements turned into system requirements. The system architecture and service features design were established as a base for System and Service Architecture. The Baseline Design Review was held on 02/02/2021. The next phase toward Critical Design Review will focus on progressing the design.