Search planning

Search planning

We are planning to search for Triumph using a sidescan sonar, when we have narrowed her position down to a smaller area, and when the Greek authorities give us permission to do so.

We need to acquire a sidescan sonar, with a navigation and plotting computer, and a cable capable of getting the sonar down to several hundred feet of depth.  All-in, the kit is likely to cost in the region of £40k, though if Triumph is lying in shallower water then that number might be halved.  There are several possible suppliers of sonars - CMax in the UK, Imagenex, Shark, Teledyne, and a couple more.  We will also need a deep-water camera mounted in a remotely operated vehicle to photograph the wreck.  The most likely pick at the moment is the DeepTrekker, from Canada.

Naturally we need a boat to tow the sonar through the water.  We have acquired a 38 foot twin screw trawler called Nancy to carry out the search.  She is in the USA at the moment, but we hope she will be in the Aegean in the summer of 2017, by which time we obviously need to have the sonar too.  Here she is:

Nancy has a good sized clear deck aft for working the sonar.  The small davit on her roof will be useful for lifting the fish in and out of the water.  We might search using a single engine, or, if that is too fast, attach a diesel outboard to the swim platform down by the water to get a low speed tow.  Most sonar kit works on US electric current of 110 volts.  Nancy has a 110v generator, so can easily supply the power we will need.

The search, once we start, will probably take a few months.  We know that others are also searching for Triumph, and would greatly welcome their success if they find her first!

As an illustration, here is the type of winch we could use if we limited our search to about 400 feet water depth.  This winch is over £3k.  The next size up is £23k, and weighs about 200 kilos.  The sonar search is not a simple exercise.



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