Fugro has been appointed by seafloor mineral exploration company Nauru Ocean Resources to undertake survey work to support deep sea polymetallic nodule mining in the Pacific Ocean.
Under the deal, Fugro’s specialist marine geoscience team will perform detailed site characterisation surveys to aid Nauri’s assessment of the polymetallic nodules, which contain nickel, cobalt and copper and are used in “green-tech” enterprises, such as electric vehicles and wind energy production.
The site characterisation surveys will involve acquisition of high-resolution imagery and geophysical data, and sampling of minerals from the seafloor. Fugro will also measure geotechnical properties, catalogue the mineral resource and help Nauru to determine optimal mining areas.
The data acquisition and sampling will take place in water depths of up to 4,500m over a 400km2 between the Clarion and Clipperton fracture zones. The field work will be undertaken using the company’s Echo Surveyor VII autonomous underwater vehicle and specialised seafloor sampling equipment.