Southampton Hosts Major Marine Exhibition

Ocean Business, the UK’s leading ocean technology exhibition, will be introducing some of the most groundbreaking technologies ever developed when it opens on April 5th at Southampton’s National Oceanography Centre.

Local companies demonstrate they are amongst the top solution-providers in the world.  Interestingly, research conducted by Ocean Business has also revealed that these local companies chose the Southampton vicinity for their offices, over any other location in Europe, due to its marine centre of excellence. 

Versha Carter, organiser of Ocean Business, explains, “Southampton must be credited for attracting such innovative marine
organisations.  Southampton’s maritime history, the National Oceanography Centre and close proximity to naval customers and manufacturing facilities, certainly provide a huge pull to the area.  It’s fantastic to see that local companies are producing equipment that plays such a vital role in environmental protection across the globe.” 

Specialist Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) manufacturer, Hydroid (Stand P1), is currently providing equipment for some major underwater projects.  It produces AUVs that can be fitted with many different scientific instruments, depending on how they are to be used.  The AUVs are controlled remotely and can be used in extremely shallow water or at deepsea depths of up to 6000m. 

They are currently being used in NATO and international naval missions to help underwater mine detection and clearance around dangerous shallow coastal areas. 

In the deep sea, their ability to navigate difficult underwater terrain has proved an asset in the search operation for the Air
France flight 447 AirBus that crashed in 2009.  To date, the search mission has been hampered by underwater terrain that is as rugged as the Alps, at depths of 3000 metres, however Hydroid’s AUV has been called in and is currently searching an
area of 10,000km2.  Hydroid will be providing a live demo at Ocean Business to show the exciting capabilities of AUVs.

Havant-based OSIL (Ocean Scientific International Ltd, stand C1) will be demonstrating its capabilities for environmental
protection, both in the UK and across the world.  It has recently supplied Bournemouth and West Hants Water with an oil spill detection system to protect two new reservoirs at Longham from exposure to oils and other hydrocarbons.  The new reservoirs hold 1,000 megalitres of untreated water, which is approximately 15 days supply to the Bournemouth area. OSIL installed the system above the intakes to the 100-acre site, to continually monitor the inlet from the River Stour to detect oil and prevent it from entering the water supply chain. 

Other Hampshire companies have developed technology that is being used across the world.  Yately-based Sonardyne International (stand E1) has much experience with tsunami warning systems; with several systems already running in the Indian Ocean.  It is currently developing new technology which will make tsunami warning systems even more reliable. 

Versha Carter continued, “We have some absolute cutting edge technology to be demonstrated at this year’s show.  There have also been some fascinating developments in marine technologies, with ocean gliders, improved tsunami warning systems, carbon capture and even underwater archaeology – with one exhibitor, MacArtney, using sonar imaging to reveal the medieval town of Dunwich in Suffolk, which was submerged by the sea.”

There will be over 300 exhibitors at Ocean Business  this year, covering developments in all areas of marine science.