SA Instrumentation has now moved

Posted on June 30, 2015

Pioneering Scottish-based acoustic technology company expands its reach

New premises include specialist test facilities

St Andrews Instrumentation, one of the UK’s leading designers and manufacturers of innovative acoustic technologies, has invested in a new headquarters and test centre as it advances its global production ambitions.

The company – a wholly owned subsidiary of the University of St Andrews - has taken a lease on two units at Mill Court Industrial Estate in Tayport, Dundee, effectively tripling the size of its premises.  The moves comes after three years of research and development and around £1million of investment by the University and the SOI Group. 

SA Instrumentation are pioneers in real-time autonomous acoustic detection, and have designed and manufactured a portfolio of products with a growing range of applications, from marine mammal detection to advanced human diagnostics equipment.  Its in-house capabilities allow it to customise solutions where required.

The company’s range of products include the bespoke Decimus®, which is used in support of environmental assessments, mitigation measures and scientific research. Applications include marine renewables, oil and gas, decommissioning, marine civil engineering and infrastructure projects by the Government, security and defence contractors, as well as the scientific community.

Earlier this year, SA Instrumentation launched its data acquisition (DAQ) card, a new and revolutionary solution for acoustic processing including, marine mammal research and noise monitoring. Easy to integrate, it allows for the detection of acoustic data over a wide frequency band width that allow user control over the gain and filtering on all its analogue inputs combined with small size and power requirement.

The new premises will accommodate the company’s five research and development engineers, as well as administrative staff.  In addition to office space, there will be a new workshop area comprising design, test and despatch areas. 

SA Instrumentation CEO Derek Watson said that the Decimus range, including the DAQ, has broken the boundaries of modern technology.

“The University of St Andrews has invested more than £1million in SA Instrumentation, allowing it to develop its research and development capabilities, and assisting it to become a conduit for the commercialisation of new and innovative technologies,” he said.

“The new four-channel DAQ card, in particular, is a ground-breaking acoustic device, which can be used to pick up the smallest of sounds in the seas and on the land.  Decimus® has been developed following requests from companies in the marine, oil and gas, construction and security markets looking for a device which will give them cost-effective, long term monitoring and detection capabilities. 

“Having all of our personnel and facilities located together on one site is of huge benefit; the move supports the continuation of SA Instrumentation’s growth and significant research and development activities. This is crucial to our success as we develop and improve existing and new technologies and services to lead the way in this area.”

Recent project work with Liquid Robotics, and other world-leading manufacturer of Autonomous Surface Vehicles, has helped to underpin the company’s decision to open the new office.  Robotic and Autonomous surface vessels are transforming ocean observation, making data collection and monitoring easier, safer and more cost effective.

Operations Manager Richard Baggaley said: “We have been working with Liquid Robotics for the past couple of years, integrating the Decimus onto the Wave Glider allowing autonomous passive acoustic monitoring solutions on the Liquid Robotics platform.  Successful initial trials were carried out on Loch Ness and the North Sea off the East coast of Scotland and we are continuing to look at how our instruments we can be supported on the Wave Glide series SV2 and SV3.

“Integration of our products into these types of platforms requires good workspace so the new facility at Tayport gives us the space to accommodate and work on such projects in a more efficient way.”  

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SA Instrumentation @ new premises  Photo by FifeX