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Advanced ROV Package for Automatic Mobile Inspection of Sediments

Objective



ROVs and adapted skids are the new way to collect samples and data especially in deep sea allowing the scientists to increase the scale of the investigation, compared to the one obtained with manned submersibles or towed sleds. However the results achievable with conventional ROV's are greatly conditionned by the manual piloting performance of the vehicle and by the ability of making continuous in situ measurements and multiple sampling of the basic elements. The prime objective of the present proposal is to provide the technology to carry out integrated multidisciplinary seabed research by developing a scientific and technological system, named ARAMIS, which can be easily integrated with typical mid class existing ROVs to form a highly automated and robotised scientific tool for catrying out benthic investigations both in shallow and deep waters. The resulting system (ARAMIS+ROV) will allow the pilot/scientist to easily command in real time both the ROV and the scientific instruments/tools so as to carry out the scientific mission in an efficient, reliable and repeatable way. Main capabilities include:
- scientific: automatic near boKom water physical and chemical profiles, automatic sea water and sediment multiple sampling, physical and chemical sediment profiles, quantitative and dimensional video transects via automatic processing of stereo TV images, visual analysis of sea floor features through automatic image processing techniques
- technological: automatic station keeping, automatic navigation along a transect at a given boKom distance, automatic landing on the sea boKom to take samples, automatic swim around a static target, automatic obstacle detection and avoidance
The ARAMIS system (composed of two parts: an underwater skid carrying the scientific instruments/tools to be installed under the ROV, and of a control rack to be installed in the ROV control cabin) will be integrated with two ROVs of different size, made available to the project by two partners, and then tested at sea in scientifically interesting sites in shallow and deep waters.
The Partnership, co-ordinated by Tecnomare, is constituted by two groups: - A scientific group (University of Barcelona-Spain, Istitute of Marine Biology of Crete-Grece, University of Galway-Ireland, IFREMER-France) with recognised complementary capabilities and experience in benthic problematics, which will ensure the scientific correctness of the technical approach and will address the test site selection and results analysis and validation.
- A technological group (Tecnomare-Italy, HerioK WaK University-UK, Enea-ltaly CNR-IAN-Italy, IFREMER-France and Challenger Oceanic-UK) which has recognised capabilities in robotic and sampling technology and will ensure the minimisation of risks in the development, integration and field testing of the technologies.
ARAMIS forces lies in its high potential to combine supervisory controlled navigation with quantitative video observation and multiple sampling capabilities; it constitutes a very significant step further towards the large scale investigation of sea bottom.
Beside the scientific importance of the project, there will be impoortant spin offs relevant to the industrial applications of the key subsystems developed in the offshore oil field.

Coordinator

TECNOMARE SPA - SOCIETA PER LO SVILUPPO DELLE TECNOLOGIE MARINE
Address
San Marco 3584
30124 Venezia
Italy

Participants (10)

CHALLENGER OCEANIC SYSTEMS AND SERVICES
United Kingdom
Address
6,Meadow Vale 6
GU27 1DH Hasslemere - Surrey
Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR)
Italy
Address
Viale F.causa 18/R
16145 Genova
Ente per le Nuove Tecnologie l'Energia e l'Ambiente (ENEA)
Italy
Address
Via Anguillarese 301
00060 Santa Maria Di Galeria Roma
Heriot-Watt University
United Kingdom
Address
Riccarton
EH14 4AS Edinburgh
IFREMER - Institut Français de Recherche pour l'Exploitation de la Mer
France
Address
Lab. De Robotique Et Intelligence Art.
83507 La Seyne-sur-mer
INSTITUTE OF MARINE BIOLOGY OF CRETE
Greece
Address
Port Of Heraklion
71003 Poros Irakleiou Kritis
NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF IRELAND, GALWAY
Ireland
Address
University Road
Galway
Thomson Broadband Systems (TBS)
France
Address
Technopôle Brest-iroise
29608 Brest
Trident Sensors Ltd
Ireland
Address
School Of Chemical Sciences
9 Dublin
Universitat de Barcelona
Spain
Address
S/n,lluis Solé Sabarís
08028 Barcelona