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Every Day a New Expedition


“The warm glow of the sun peaks through the window blinds and reminds me it’s time to get up and put on my uniform: light breathable shirt, shorts, sneakers, and lots of sun block. About an hour later, I’m sitting on a boat tied up next to a dock, sweating in the North Carolina heat. A new multibeam installation is underway!


As with any typical installation, “there’s a topside interface box, computer, and three monitors to be placed, cables to be routed, and lever arms to consider all with keeping the crew’s comfort in mind,” explains Brisson.

Yet with the R2Sonic Integrated Inertial Navigation System (I2NS), “the combined topside box for both the multibeam and inertial navigation system saves me from integrating multiple topside interface boxes, cuts back on more than half the cables required, and simplifies the setup for each device driver in our acquisition software.”

An unusual underwater discovery

One morning, having fitted a new I2NS and Sonic 2022 to a customer’s boat in the Cape Fear River, Brisson instructed the ship’s captain to get close to a nearby seawall. “I figured it’s time to show the customer the vertical mapping capabilities of the system,” says Brisson. “As we transit parallel to the wall, we notice a peculiar object starting to take shape with every new ping of data.”

That object: a newer model Dodge pickup truck!


Uncovering the truth

While completing some additional passes, the crew catches the attention of a local police boat – and tell the officers what they have discovered. “In disbelief, they board our survey vessel to peer over my shoulder and review the data that we just collected,” says Brisson.

Unwittingly, ECHO81 had stumbled across a vehicle that was part of an ongoing insurance fraud scheme. “I took a couple of screenshots showing the vehicle in question and its geographic location, saved it to a small USB drive, and handed it over to one of the officers. Pleased with their good detective work, they hopped back on their boat and motored away,” said Brisson.

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ECHO81 is a US-based distributor for hydrographic survey equipment and marine instrumentation offering sales, rentals, installations, and training. The company has partnered with several leading manufacturers throughout the industry to provide a comprehensive portfolio serving the offshore windfarm, oil and gas, marine construction, port and harbor security, and research markets.  To learn more about ECHO81, visit, or call +1 (706) 522-3022.

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R2Sonic Multibeam Echosounders

We offer a simplified portfolio of four multibeam echosounders, all with wideband selectable operating frequencies. What sets R2Sonic apart is the ability to customize each sonar with any of our suite of revolutionary technical modes. You can add any of these options to any multibeam sonar at any time. You can upgrade remotely from wherever you are, whenever you need.

captain and crew operating a multibeam echosounder on bridge of ship
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