11.4 Mission IV : Marine Instrumentation

The major projects being done in this mission are development of reliable Acoustic Tide Gauge for commercialization, development of integrated Underwater Survey System and Acoustic Release Systems. A project for development of Portable Digital Current Meter was taken up in co-ordination with IIT, Chennai and a pilot project on feasibility of developing a fish meat sensing device was taken up with CECRI, Karaikudi.

Design and Development of Acoustic Tide Gauge (ATG)

After the performance evaluation of the first prototype ATG in the field, three more marine grade ATGs were developed and tested successfully in laboratory. They were installed for field trials at three different locations in Chennai port and Ennore creek. The air acoustic transducers needed for these ATGs were developed in-house. A telemetry system for remote logging of tidal data from these ATGs has been developed and is undergoing lab trials. A user-friendly graphical user interface has also been developed to communicate with ATG system through serial interface. Seven stand-alone ATGs are being fabricated for COMAPS programme of NIOT. A third generation ATG is being designed and will be ready by June 1999.

Development of Acoustic Release system

Acoustic releases are necessary to recover costly instruments with their deep water mooring lines. NIOT has taken up development of Acoustic Releases indigenously. The source levels for the transducer required and the ranges were calculated based on the sonar equation. The electronic circuits for the deck unit and the release system are being designed. A pinger system capable of operating at 1000m depth is being developed as a precursor to the release system.

Development of Integrated Underwater Survey System (IUSS)

The proposed state-of-the-art IUSS comprises a sub-bottom profiler, side scan sonar and single frequency echo sounder. The processing software for controlling the electronics and communicating with interfacing devices is being developed. The user requirements have been obtained from various organisations and the action plan is ready. The system design for the echosounder is in progress using HP Vee software on VXI platform.

Development of Portable Digital Current Meter

Under the sponsorship of NIOT, the Ocean Engineering Centre, IIT(Chennai) has developed a single component underwater current sensor. Based on this, an analog version of the current meter was designed and the specification of the digital version finalised. The completed version of the current meter will be ready be December, 1999 for field trials.

Viability study of the development of Freshness Index Meter for fish meat

This project was sponsored to CECRI, Karaikudi in October, 1998. The user agencies such as MPEDA and Aquaculture Foundation of India have been consulted in arriving at the specifications. The feasibility study for development of a Freshness Index Meter is in progress.