Over 4 years, repetitive bathymetric measurements of a shipwreck in the Gr̊dyb tidal inlet channel in the Danish Wadden Sea were carried out using a state-of-the-art high-resolution multibeam echosounder (MBES) coupled with a real-time long range kinematic (LRK™) global positioning system. Seven measurements during a single survey in 2003 (n = 7) revealed a horizontal and vertical precision of the MBES system of ±20 and ±2 cm, respectively, at a 95% confidence level. By contrast, four annual surveys from 2002 to 2005 (n = 4) yielded a horizontal and vertical precision (at 95% confidence level) of only ±30 and ±8 cm, respectively. This difference in precision can be explained by three main factors: (1) the dismounting of the system between the annual surveys, (2) rougher sea conditions during the survey in 2004 and (3) the limited number of annual surveys. In general, the precision achieved here did not correspond to the full potential of the MBES system, as this could certainly have been improved by an increase in coverage density (soundings/m2), achievable by reducing the survey speed of the vessel. Nevertheless, precision was higher than that reported to date for earlier offshore test surveys using comparable equipment.
- Programme Area 5: Nature and Climate