From One Coast to the Other – Continuing the Exploration

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Greetings enthusiasts!

How have you been? A marvelous year has come and gone and I have finally found a few moments to blog about the interesting places and things the ROV work has taken me and shown. The above photo is of a ROV consisting of the brains of an OpenROV, and a body of a more traditional ROV. This one is named Eidothea Mark II. The frame is schedule 80 PVC with a PVC float in the aft section, a mineral oil filled battery housing (containing 1 4350mAh LiPO) and the OpenROV pressure cylinder in the fore section. Three hobby motors, which are silicone greased to protect against corrosion, provide thrust for fwd-bck, ascend-descend, and yaw. It’s a blast!

The photo above is that of Eidothea Mark II at Wallace’s bait and Tackle in Hampton, Va, in the beautiful waters of the Chesapeake Bay. We had maybe 12 feet visibility, which for the bay, is really good, LOL.

The ROV work is still ongoing, as you can imagine. The CTD+ has undergone a refit, with a working salinity sensor coupled with the OpenROV IMU/Depth module. We are working on a real-time data feed from the unit into the ROV brain board (BBB) and how to best visualize it. More to come on that soon.

We’ve also been working on some dead-reckoning navigation solutions using the IMU/Vision/Sonar and a Kalman Filter. Preliminary results with the IMU / Kalman filter can be found at OpenROV forums Nav posts . Summary on that is, as nice as the Kalman filter is, another sensor modality for correction is most certainly needed!

In other news, I wanted to point you to the Autonomy Incubator at NASA Langley Research Center. Here, we are developing an autonomy framework for land/sea/air/and space vehicles, while having one hell of a time! It’s the only reason we left NorCal!

Here are some other shots of the ROV and I will be posting more on the Autonomy Incubator and ROVs in the near future!

Remember, make and make often. Make the world you want, and not the one given to you.

— Jim

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