Iridium Provides Data Links for Underwater Monitoring

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Bethesda, Md.-based Iridium Communications Inc. is providing satellite data links for an underwater monitoring system an Australian company is deploying for a Chevron offshore gas project, Iridium said in a Nov. 11 press release.

The Australian company, Perth-based Fastwave Communications, is under contract to Chevron Australia Pty Ltd. to supply an Iridium-enabled water-quality monitoring system for the Gorgon liquid natural gas field northwest of Australia’s Barrow Island.

The system, which will monitor turbidity levels arising from dredging and spoil operations in waters near the gas processing plant, consists of underwater instrumentation modules equipped with Iridium short-burst data modems and connected to buoys that relay the data packets to an environmental monitoring system onshore.

The modules are designed to function at depths up to 50 meters and last at least four months between battery recharges, according to the Iridium release.