Ocean Deep Group

Underwater Dam Inspection

Ocean Deep Group provides pertinent information for dam safety assessments.  

Regular inspections can prevent dam failures. Remote technology can help.

Inspection and maintenance are critical to the performance and longevity of underwater infrastructures. Measurable data, images and videos can be collected using remote technologies for underwater dam inspections, condition assessments and regulated inspection reports. Ocean Deep Group has gained international recognition for researching and developing remote techniques for underwater dam inspection, repair and maintenance. With limited to no impact on normal plant operating conditions, Ocean Deep Group has developed methodologies that use sonar systems to capture and present pertinent data for asset management. Our team of remotely operated vehicle (ROV) pilots, technicians, engineers and certified hydrographers are well-versed in underwater data collection and have gained vast experience working at numerous dam sites across the globe. Ocean Deep Group’s inspection data can identify offsets, misalignments of concrete slabs, leaks, silt accumulation, and spalling, among others. This crucial information helps identify conditions that may adversely affect the safety and functionality of a dam and associated underwater structure. In addition, comparative analysis of repeat inspection data can help identify trends in features of interest, assisting in the development of maintenance and repair programs.

Ocean Deep Group is your go-to company for specialized underwater services

The importance of underwater dam inspections cannot be understated when it comes to identifying conditions that may adversely affect dam safety. In terms of underwater dam inspections and asset management, Ocean Deep Group has the capability to remotely investigate the condition of the following assets:
  • Pacoima Dam - Ocean Deep Group
  • Bridges
  • Piers
  • Gates
  • Gate slots
  • Sluice gates
  • Penstocks
  • Draft tubes
  • Spillways
  • Tailraces
  • Training walls
  • Powerhouses
  • Water towers, and
  • Reservoirs
Ocean Deep Group performs underwater inspection and maintenance services using customizable remotely operated vehicle ROVs, unmanned survey vessels (USV), and other dedicated survey vessels suited for operations on inland waters such as rivers, lakes, canals, and reservoirs. Our fleet of advanced ROVs and unmanned survey vessels (USV) can be equipped with the latest technologies; one or two multi-beam sonars, side-scan sonar, real-time kinematic GNSS with inertial aiding, motion reference unit, LiDAR scanner, and high-resolution digital cameras to provide above-water / below-water data to assess various structures. High-definition (HD) and standard-definition (SD) video cameras capture live video and video stills during dam inspections. Video is viewed in real-time by the remotely operated vehicle pilot and is recorded onto a data recording computer. Two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) multi-beam imaging sonar provide valuable feature detection capabilities for the inspection of variances in surface texture. A side-scan sonar (SSS system) can be mounted on any vessel, custom-designed frame, or remotely operated vehicle. The resulting processed sonar imagery results in a mosaic of the full face of the dam structure. A Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) system collects three-dimensional (3D) point cloud data above and below the water’s surface. The laser scanner acquires thousands of points per second to generate a three-dimensional (3D) set of points (point cloud) representative of the target features.
Example of 2D Sonar
Example of 2D Sonar
Example of 3D Sonar
Example of 3D Sonar

Comprehensive reports are an essential tool for making critical decisions

Through use of the most advanced equipment and techniques, Ocean Deep Group provides a comprehensive and detailed representation of existing conditions below the water’s surface. Data collection is consistently completed in a safe and efficient manner, removing the dangers associated with personnel in the water and minimizing a plant’s operational downtime. Additionally, Ocean Deep Group’s data collection is always performed to high standards. The comprehensive reports provide a solid baseline for future dam inspections comparisons.

Advanced 2D and 3D sonar systems provide detailed data for understanding and quantifying underwater conditions both safely and efficiently. This supports true underwater condition assessments so that maintenance activities can be planned for instead of reacted to, introducing further cost savings.

If there isn’t a current solution, we may be able to develop one for you.

Our team of professionals has the experience and professional qualifications to provide clients with cost-effective and safe solutions to support their underwater inspections. This team is backed by a fleet of remotely operated vehicles, underwater tooling, and scientific instrument technologies to meet a multitude of client requirements. Specifically for inspections and surveys of dam infrastructure, various technologies can be utilized and customized, to ensure safe and successful data collection efforts.

Upon completion of an inspection, a review of the dam inspections video and data logs collected during inspection operations is completed in-house at Ocean Deep Group’s offices. Comprehensive reports contain documentation of methodology, equipment descriptions, and observational highlights are summarized. These reports can include:

  • A full synopsis of the facility and the methods of underwater dam inspection
  • Identification of areas of interest
  • Accurate representation of asset
  • Raw/Edited inspection video and stills
  • Measurable and comparable data
  • XYZ data points with ability to export to CAD
  • Sonar mosaics
  • Volumetric assessments

The resulting document delivers clear and accurate information for condition assessment review, providing a scientific and repeatable approach for data collection.



Why use remote technologies for underwater dam inspections?
  • ROV’s can reduce the risks associated with sending personnel into confined spaces. Since specific environmental conditions are not normally required for remote methods, safety protocols are not as complex as they are for manned intervention methods, providing savings in cost and time. The data is relayed to real-time observation monitors, providing the opportunity for the plant owner or representative to monitor and direct the inspection. While there may be some subjectivity in interpretation of the data, the methods can be repeated year after year to provide comparative information.
Can ROV’s be customized for specific jobs or environments?
  • Ocean Deep Group has the capability to fully customize sensor packages and test/prove functionality in a virtual environment. We then bring the idea to fruition and test the ROV before deploying onto the job site. Clients are welcome to participate and witness the trials either virtually or at our shop prior to field deployment.
What kind of deliverables can Ocean Deep Group provide?
  • XYZ data points, sonar mosaics, volumetric assessments, raw/edited inspection video, stills and images, and any other sensor output in a format that is organized and straightforward. Quality data is only good if our clients have access to it, can cross-reference it, and use it in a practical manner.

Ocean Deep Group provides inspections for the following areas:

Contact us to learn more about our services

+1 204-819-2121
For immediate assistance, please contact our Head Office at the number above.
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