By Steve WilcoxThe National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) in New Zealand recently trialled KONGSBERG's ToPAS PS120 parametric sub bottom profiler on its survey launch Ikatere. Several lines were run over areas that had been previously surveyed with multichannel boomer and mini GI gun systems. The ToPAS PS120 provided high resolution survey quality data at survey speeds of 5 - 7 knots compared to the traditional 4 – 5 knots of a boomer or airgun survey.
NIWA was impressed with the data quality and are planning to operate the ToPAS system at the same time as the EM 2040 multibeam system on the Ikatere. This will provide a detailed map of the seabed, which will allow features of interest to be identified potentially for further exploration with the mini GI gun system which offers less resolution but greater penetration.