Dalhousie University, ISL

Seventy percent of the Earth is covered in ocean water. Human prosperity on Earth is therefore highly dependent on ocean systems. Researchers at Dalhousie University are working with Pleiades Robotics to prepare Spiri drones for ocean-based science, security, commerce and stewardship.

"Unmanned aerial systems support surface and underwater vessels by improving the range and speed of data available for decision-making on the spot," explains Prof. Mae Seto, director of the Intelligent Systems Laboratory at Dalhousie University.

Autonomous missions over water can be much more difficult than over land. One problem is how and where to land for recharging – a ship might be moving forward but also heaving, tossing, and rolling. A Capstone project sponsored by Pleiades Robotics and supervised by Prof. Seto has led to a solution to this problem, and it is now in beta form.

With this development, the way is now clear for reliable autonomous, combined aerial/surface/underwater robot operations at sea.

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