Last decade has seen a spurt in autonomous technologies in military and civilian sectors. The search for oil and gas is moving into ever deeper waters, and the need for coastal surveillance and climatic monitoring, makes underwater autonomous assistance quite obvious for a developing nation like India with thousands of kilometres of coastline. Using such platforms in these endeavours provides an efficient way to keep human life out of harm’s way in hostile environments.
The prototype developed has its navigation based on an internal IMU (Inertial Mass Unit) and the software is extensible to support DVL (Doppler Velocity Logger) based navigation. Near range object detection and path planning is achieved via Image Processing and using two surge and one heave thrusters the bot can operate in three degrees of freedom. The modular structure allows for the addition of extra sensors like pressure, temperature and manipulators like grippers and torpedoes. It has a Intel Atom processor, which runs the control algorithms for motion and required task completion.
Paper published with permission.