Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
2004 projects
ROV / AUV enhancements and upgrades

Precision control technologies for ROVs and intervention AUVs

Project Manager: Steve Rock
Lead Scientist: Bruce Robison
Lead Engineer: Rob McEwen

2004 will be the third year of this continuing project. In 2003, we made significant progress–in particular, demonstrating robust and reliable benthic station-keeping of an ROV (as a pilot aid) and long-duration (89 minutes) autonomous tracking of a jellyfish by ROV Ventana. Tasks include:

Task 1: Continued improvement of ROV pilot aids for vision-based navigation and control, in response to feedback from ocean trials. For example, we want to automatically detect (and compensate for) loss of vision lock due to “dust” kicked up from the bottom by the ROV thrusters.

Task 2: Complete the implementation of a pilot interface for Ventana.

Task 3: Improve our autonomous jellyfish tracking system by incorporating DVL (Doppler Velocity Log) water tracking velocity measurements into the algorithm. Also, test new algorithmic approaches for anticipating jelly motion with the goal of improving the robustness of our system even further.

Task 4: Develop technologies that will enable a fully autonomous instrument to track and photograph jellys for long durations.

Task 5: Use the OTTER vehicle to demonstrate a new
technique for relative position sensing that will enable a higher level of robustness in performing intervention tasks. 

Also, in 2004 we will support AUV docking activities and explore the extension of our benthic mapping and navigation (mosaicking) capability to AUV operation.

Last updated: Feb. 05, 2009