Member News Story

DP-PHINS adds to acoustics to place vessel operators in prime position

DP-PHINS adds to acoustics to place vessel operators in prime position
iXBlue has expanded the functionality of its industry-leading PHINS inertial navigation system (INS). The new DP-PHINS is designed to interface with any third-party acoustic positioning equipment to provide INS-enhanced acoustic data input to marine dynamic positioning (DP) systems. DP-PHINS canalso take data from a range of additional sensors, some not normally associated with DP, such as Doppler velocity logs (DVL), for use in maintaining vessel position.
Using INS with acoustics in this way produces positioning data that is smoother, more accurate and is updated at a higher rate.
Consequently, station-keeping performance is significantly improved, vessels use less fuel, and wear and tear on the DP system components is reduced.
DP-PHINS was developed at the request of one of the world’s leading subsea engineering and construction companies, which operates a large fleet of specialist vessels. The company was keen to improve the quality of the acoustic data provided to its vessel
DP systems. This was because during GPS outages, purely acoustic data was not capable of controlling the DP systems with the reliability that the company desired. This was particularly the case when operating in deeper water, when acoustic data can often be degraded by excessive noise.
Jim Titcomb, Offshore technical manager, iXBlue, reports, “The DP-PHINS system has been thoroughly tested in collaboration with the client. We found that acoustic positioning data delivered to the vessel DP desk was up to three times more accurate than the data produced when using acoustic equipment on its own. We are now planning to deploy the system on a commercial basis with the client for routine operations.”
PHINS (from photonic inertial navigation system) outputs position, heading, attitude, depth and heave data. Its high accuracy inertial measurement capability is due to its being built around iXBlue’s fiber optic gyroscope tehnology, now widely recognised for its combination of outstanding performance, flexibility and reliability.

About iXBlue
iXBlue is an independent industrial worldwide group well-known for the design, development and manufacture of equipment, integrated systems and solutions for civil and military industries, oceanology, aeronautics and spatial industries. Its innovative technology is used for navigation, positioning, sub-sea imagery, ocean and land exploration (offshore, oceanography, hydrography, geophysics). iXBlue is a major player in offshore oil and gas, a world leader in high-performance sea navigation systems and an expert in hydrography; the group regularly invests in research and development amounting to more than 20% of turnover. iXBlue is present throughout the world, has a growth rate of 20%, employs 450 people and turns over €80m of which 80% is for export.
To learn more about about iXBlue, visit the company’s website at
Posted 2013-04-22
Last Modified 2013-04-29 14:39