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Bayou Bend CCS selects Sulmara for offshore geophysical survey at the Bayou Bend
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Subsea specialist Sulmara has helped Bayou Bend CCS LLC unearth the “best data we’ve seen” from an uncrewed surface vessel (USV) during a high-resolution geophysical survey at the Bayou Bend carbon capture and storage project.

Bayou Bend CCS LLC commissioned Sulmara to conduct an archaeological and geohazard assessment of the proposed Bayou Bend pipeline route from the landfall to the future offshore platform locations, which has the potential to reduce emissions from regional industrial facilities by safely storing carbon dioxide underground.

Sulmara utilised an electric WAM-V 16 USV for the offshore data acquisition to help significantly lower the overall carbon footprint of the project by reducing the number of diesel-burning vessels offshore, as well as shortening the time required to conduct the survey.

Sulmara Project Manager Darius Rivera said, “The quality of the data gathered is some of the best we’ve seen from a USV. That quality of information, as well as the operability of the equipment and relationship that has been developed, have been key to the project’s success.”

“Launching the USV proved challenging given the time of year with the higher winds and seas. However, I am delighted we were able to overcome these issues and provide Bayou Bend CCS with such valuable data.”

The collaborative project utilised the SpaceX-backed Starlink satellite system to ensure strong communications between the shore and the USV, allowing the Scotland-based company to push the technology further than ever before.

Darius added: “With the survey area around 15km from shore, we integrated the WAM-V with Starlink to achieve higher speed communications with the mobile remote command centre. This is the first time we have been able to go beyond the 3km mark with this size USV, ensuring improved quality of data and reducing the time needed to collect the information when compared to a conventional survey vessel.”

Andy Nicol, Regional Director for the Western Hemisphere, said: “We are proud to partner with Bayou Bend CCS on this important project. Our development of towed sensor capability from an uncrewed platform is a clear demonstration of our commitment to both sustainability and innovation.

“We look forward to working with Bayou Bend CCS again in the future to help them push towards net-zero."

Formed in 2019 and employing more than 200 people worldwide, Sulmara has grown rapidly to become an international services provider with offices across the Americas, Europe and Asia