SonarMite v5 Echo Sounder
The SonarMite Echo Sounder is the result of nearly two years research and development to further extend the boundaries of shallow water hydrographic surveying equipment. The introduction by Ohmex in 1997 of the SonarLite, the worlds first truly portable echo sounder system, has been a hard act to follow and it remains the portable instrument of choice in many survey companies around the world. The release of the SonarMite instrument marks the next stage introducing a series of equipment designed around the WinSTRUMENT concept making use of the latest portable computers integrated with new measurement technologies.
SonarMite Main Features
Bluetooth technology integrated with Windows Pocket PC devices
Proven 'Smart' transducer design with QA output
Internal rechargeable battery for all day use in the field
Easily integrated with other modern software and GPS technology
Throughout the Hydrographic world the term 'Black Box' has become a euphemism for a device that has a minimal user interface and normally requires connection to a PC to be of any use ! In most cases these boxes are a cut down version of a more conventional instrument without all the features of the full system. The SonarMite extends this idea of a rugged design and minimalist interface to produce a 'Blue Box' system where the user interface is provided by integrated software running on a portable computer connected via a Bluetooth link. The use of wireless technology enables the instrument to be waterproof and used in a hostile environment while the more sensitive computer features can be located in a more user friendly environment up to 50m away from the instrument.
The SonarMite instrument uses the same 'Smart' integrated transducer technology used in the SonarLite system, in addition to highly reliable bottom tracking algorithms using DSP techniques the system also outputs a quality value associated with every depth measurement made. The popular SonarW10 software has been updated to Windows 7,8, 10 versions, in addition to the standard post-processing and editing features found in the SonarLite software the program now includes extended features to implement the additional measurements produced by the SonarMite. Software for the 'front end' of the SonarMite is available to run on a wide range of devices from Pocket PCs through to the full range of desktop systems running the Windows operating system.
Active Transducer Technology
The SonarLite uses active transducer technology manufactured exclusively for use with the Ohmex Instruments range of survey quality equipment. All the signal generation, data processing and filtering is performed digitally within the transducer element, thus overcoming problems associated with old analogue technology ...
The Active Transducers are available in the standard 'Boat' shape transducer using a 'Knock-off' body design patented by Airmar, this allows a transducer shoe to be mounted on the rear transom of a boat alongside outboard motors, the active transducer tracking and filtering algorithms are not effected by the acoustic noise generated by the motor. The Airmar patent design allows the transducer to kick its mounting if grounded and thus avoid serious damage.
New P66 Transducer
The standard SonarLite 'Smart' transducer has been updated using the new Airmar P66 shell and ceramic element. This design offers an improved 'slipstream' design together with a simple 'clip-on' fixing clamp enabling easier transducer mounting/removal. The active processor has been updated to a flash memory processor which enables the later reprogramming of the transducer to incorporate new firmware features as they arrive. The SonarLite active transducer is a specially designed Ohmex transducer with firmware designed for survey applications to IMO standards, IT IS NOT THE SAME TRANSDUCER AS THE AIRMAR SMART NMEA DEVICE although it uses the same shell.
The SonarMite system is a portable hydrographic survey system so by definition the boat used will be either a light portable boat or a vessel of opportunity. The SonarMite transducer mounting is designed to fit on to a vertical pole although the actual fitting will vary with the numerous different types of vessel
The above illustration shows typical arrangements to mount the transducer in a small inflatable craft, care should be taken to ensure that the mount is firm enough for reliable readings but flexible enough to avoid damage if the transducer collides with the bottom surface.
Version 5 Updates
New release of the SonarMite v3 in a redesigned die-cast aluminum case. The SonarMite is the smallest, lightest, truly portable hydrographic echo sounder system available. A complete system which includes echo sounder, transducer, cables, battery charger all weighing just 5Kg shipped in its polypropylene transit case. The internal rechargeable NiMh batteries have been updated with an additional 20% capacity providing 12 hours working time from a full charge. Using the latest battery technology the device complies fully with modern environmental, safe transit and final disposal requirements. The instrument provides multiple communication interfaces including RS232, Bluetooth and USB. The new custom USB interface cable has been designed for the SonarMite to provide a sealed IP67 connector, avoiding non-waterproof USB connector problems in a marine environment. SonarMite can be configured to output over dual interfaces to enable data logging/display at two separate locations simultaneously. SonarMite application software is designed to work with a wide range of external Windows PC, Tablet and PDA equipment, the software has recently been updated and tested working with Windows 7,8 and 10.
SonarMite v5 visual LED feedback