The HydroBall® buoy is an autonomous bathymetric data acquisition system that integrates all the of the sub-components (depth, attitude, positioning, logger) required for high-quality data collection in a portable and easily-deployable platform. Its spherical design and robust shell casing have been engineered to make the HydroBall® most effective in complicated areas such as high-flowing rivers, canyons, reservoirs, ultra-coastal zones, and remote locations.
The GNSS receiver measures the buoy’s position (latitude, longitude, and ellipsoidal height). The miniature inertial sensor measures the buoy’s attitude (roll, pitch, and heading). The echosounder measures the water depth. The output of all three components are fed into a micro-controller inside the buoy that can generate up to ten soundings per second. By moving the buoy over the zone of interest, enough data can be collected and modelled to accurately depict the bathymetry of the area.
The ‘pre-checked’ integrated design of the buoy presents an extremely effective alternative to the classic pole-mount used in conventional hydrographic surveys. The operator no longer needs to 1) install the sensors on the platform, 2) power the sensors and data acquisition computer, 3) configure the sensors and measure the offsets between the different components. This saves considerable time and greatly reduces the risk for human errors.