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Unexploded Ordnance

DSMC work closely with Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) Risk Management and Disposal Specialists to provide on site investigation and disposal services from geophysical surveys through to disposal.


If deemed necessary following a desktop study and risk assessment by a Specialist UXO Risk Assessor, we can carry out pUXO specific geophysical surveys utilising magnetometer and sidescan equipment to pin-point items of potential ordnance (pUXO) on or under the seabed within a working area. This data is then analysed by the UXO Risk Assessor who determines which items, if any, require further investigation before an ALARP certificate can be issued. If items warrant further investigation then a target list is produced.


DSMC can then return to site with Diving teams and / or ROVs to excavate, expose and identify any targets as required to determine if items are confirmed ordnance or debris / detritus (which we may also need to remove to clear the worksite). We work closely with industry leading Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) experts who provide us with Maritime UXO Awareness Training and supplement our teams with qualified, licensed and experienced EOD personnel and EOD Supervisors to oversee ordnance safety onboard, assist with the accurate identification of items and with the production of detailed ordnance reports.

Typically, should items be identified that require disposal, there will be a short stand-down period whilst MMO licenses and permits are arranged with our Disposal Experts, clients and the authorities before we return to dispose of the items with a controlled detonation.

When investigating items of potential ordnance on the seabed we utilise state-of-the-art RTK corrected GNSS and USBL positioning systems which allow us to:

  • Ensure that the vessels mooring systems are deployed clear of potential ordnance.

  • Record the underwater positioning of our divers and ROVs with an accuracy of +/- 20mm throughout their dives.

  • Record the positions of items found on the seabed with pin-point accuracy.

  • Allow us to guide the diver / ROV back to items located during previous dives / shifts.

  • Provide the authorities with accurate positioning of items found in the event that exclusion zones need to be established.

  • Provide the UXO Risk Management company with Track-plots and CSV file recordings of the Diver or ROV's positioning throughout their search pattern as evidence of the ground covered. This is especially useful as evidence of a thorough search should no objects be found.

  • CSV files and positioning data that can be uploaded into the clients / UXO Risk assessors own positioning software.

Additionally to the above, our underwater video recording systems integrate with our hydrographic survey systems so that water depth and XY positioning of the diver / ROV  is recorded to the video overlay and stills.

We have also developed a shallow water positioning system to obtain the same data-set where the deployment of a pole mounted USBL system is not possible.

Please contact us for further information and UXO specific references.

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