Cygnus Instruments is a leading manufacturer of ultrasonic thickness gauges and is famous amongst its global customer base for its robust and simple to use product philosophy.
One of the first products that Cygnus brought to market in the 1980s was a subsea ultrasonic thickness gauge. And it is testament to the outstanding original design that there is still strong demand for this product nearly forty years later. However, as technology, understanding – and subsequently training – have advanced, Cygnus has of course introduced new products to address these changing needs.
While the original Underwater unit has many features that have endeared it to commercial divers, it is a hand-held unit. Which means that in strong currents – or where two hands are needed for any other reason – divers have often fed back to Cygnus that a “hands-free” subsea solution would be extremely desirable.
In these instances, the diver can now switch to using a Cygnus DIVE. This is a highly capable subsea UT unit that is worn on the wrist of the diver with a very large, bright LED screen.
A reference was made above to the changing requirements of the offshore inspection industry and advances in knowledge and training; when the DIVE was introduced, Cygnus ensured that this new unit would be an instrument that was as useful to divers in as many situations and applications as possible.
To that end, an A-scan display is standard on all DIVE models. The A-scan will allow a diver to verify that the reading is being taken from the true back wall – particularly useful in difficult measuring applications with very heavy corrosion such as sea defences and pilings. Other options available are single and echo-echo measuring modes; data logging (up to 5000 readings accompanied by their A-scans can be saved on the DIVE) ; a choice of twin crystal probes for extreme corrosion and also HelmetView® – a clever remote display that sits flush on the outside of the diver’s helmet and allows the diver to see the measurement being taken without needing to look down. This last option is also especially useful in ultra-low visibility or “black water”.
The feature-rich nature of the DIVE unit has had enormously positive feedback. Just recently, UK-based divers Commercial & Specialised Diving Ltd (www.specialised-diving.co.uk) chose the Cygnus DIVE for a job where they were expecting high levels of corrosion. George Goodman, Operations Manager for Specialised Diving, reported that:
“The Cygnus DIVE was simple to use and, like all Cygnus kit, it was good and rugged. The large display was excellent – and clearly visible even in darker water. Readings were easy to take and snapped up on the screen quickly – which makes our job as divers so much easier. The twin crystal probes were particularly useful on areas of very heavy corrosion.”