HR Wallingford has developed a remote controlled boat that can be used to accurately measure river and estuarine data including flow, depth and suspended sediment concentrations.
It uses a technology called Acoustic Doppler Current Profiling which sends acoustic pulses in to the water to generate data about the speed and depth of the water it is travelling through. The ARC-Boat has been designed by naval architects and developed in collaboration with end users to perfectly match their needs. This boat provides river and flood managers an efficient and reliable way of accurately measuring flow and depth.
The unique design enables the boat to carry a variety of technical instruments and generate high quality data. The ARC-Boat has many user friendly specifications, such as the detachable hull that allows the boat to be transported in the boot of a small car, and the independently controlled propellers and twin rudders offer excellent manoeuvrability even in the roughest conditions.
The ARC-Boat was developed in response to a plea from the Environment Agency to develop a boat that would improve on the performance, reliability and ease of use of previous craft used. After rigorous testing, which included running the ARC-Boat at the national centre for white water rafting in Bala, north Wales the Environment Agency placed an order of 17 ARC-Boats. The ARC-Boat has recently been awarded the Environment Agency Project Excellence Award.
Dr Keith Powell, director of HR Wallingford explained, “The ARC-Boat is a unique design that offers excellent accessibility to water courses to gain accurate data. HR Wallingford also provides outstanding customer support throughout the ownership of an ARC-Boat, from delivery to ongoing support and training.”
Dredging Today Staff, May 21, 2012; Image: hrwallingford