Having set sail to autonomously self-navigate across the Atlantic on 27th April 2022, the Mayflower Autonomous Ship (MAS) has safely arrived in Halifax in Nova Scotia, Canada, with Valeport’s oceanographic and hydrographic instruments on board.
The MAS was fitted with the new Valeport uvSVX and a Valeport Altimeter ahead of its departure to provide vital precise underwater depth data to help protect the vessel and the onboard technology on its epic journey.
Departing from Plymouth, UK, the MAS stopped in The Azores for nine days before being diverted to Halifax after sustaining technical difficulties. Marine research organisation leading the development of MAS, ProMare, says the ship arrived in good order except for a few minor faults. The craft is expected to stay in Halifax for a couple of weeks before setting sail to its intended destination in Plymouth in Massachusetts, USA – the destination of the original Mayflower voyage in 1620.
Throughout its 3,500-mile journey, spanning 31 days out at sea, Valeport’s uvSVX and VA500 Altimeter have been working to enhance the operational capability of the MAS. The uvSVX, fitted through the hull of the MAS, features Valeport’s Sound Velocity, Temperature and Depth technology which delivers salinity, conductivity and density data, along with SVP as standard. The new uvSVX which is designed specifically for vehicles where space is a premium, boasts high accuracy with its addition of Valeport’s interchangeable pressure module that allows users to maximise operational specific depth requirements.
The compact and robust Valeport uvSVX and VA500 Altimeter use state of the art signal processing technology to provide stable, repeatable readings that deliver high accuracy data performance.
During the pitstop in Halifax, ProMare’s engineering and science teams will be downloading the scientific data obtained by the oceanographic instruments on board the vessel. This data will be fundamental in advancing our industry’s understanding in several areas including maritime cybersecurity, marine mammal monitoring, sea level mapping and ocean plastics.
Valeport is immensely proud to have been involved in the project which has seen one of the first full-sized, fully autonomous vessels cross the Atlantic, and looks forward to reviewing the findings of the operation in weeks to come.