Autonomous Robotics completes flying node prototype sea trials

Autonomous Robotics (ARL), a robotics company developing autonomous subsea solutions, has completed autonomous sea trials of a prototype ‘flying node’ autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV).

Flying nodes; Source: ARL

ARL said on Thursday that the trials were conducted at a location offshore Plymouth harbor.

The trials were performed under the supervision of ARL’s engineering director Arran Holloway, and the company said it was a step forward in the proof of concept prototype development phase.

ARL added that the trial successfully demonstrated the AUV autonomous navigation and seabed landing and take-off operation.

Holloway said: “The AUV demonstrated exceptionally stable flight and accurate navigation during the trial and completed all tests successfully. This is a major milestone in the development of the flying node concept and demonstrates the viability of some of the novel features of the system.”

Multiple receiver rows of nodes can be simultaneously deployed with fast and efficient deployment and recovery. According to the company, it reduces the cost of acquiring seabed seismic with positioning accuracy comparable to ROV deployed nodes and flexible receiver geometries.

The nodes have a maximum operating depth of 3,000 meters with a 60-day recording duration. They can also provide 4C seismic acquisition and have an integrated acoustic transponder.

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