UNIVPM BRAVe: A Hybrid Propulsion Underwater Research Vehicle
David Scaradozzi*,**, Giacomo Palmieri***, Daniele Costa***, Silvia Zingaretti*, Luca Panebianco*, Nicolò Ciuccoli*, Antonio Pinelli*, and Massimo Callegari***,†
*Department of Information Engineering (DII), Polytechnic University of Marche
Via Brecce Bianche 12, 60131 Ancona, Italy
**Laboratoire des Sciences de l’Information et des Systèmes Equipe I&M (ESIL) – CNRS, Marseille, France
***Department of Industrial Engineering & Mathematical Sciences (DIISM), Polytechnic University of Marche, Ancona, Italy
In the last decade, the underwater activities performed by archaeologists and biologists have benefited from scientific research on the guidance, control, and sensory systems of unmanned vehicles. In fact, because underwater sites of interest are often difficult for divers to access, the use of unmanned vehicle technology to conduct surveys could be quite advantageous. In this paper, a novel and partially-biomimetic underwater robot, referred to as BRAVe (Biomimetic Research Autonomous Vehicle), is presented. For documentation purposes, it is equipped with a hybrid propulsion system, which consists of two different types of thrusters. The thrusters are designed to compensate for their reciprocal flaws in order to achieve a more efficient overall system. Specifically, the biomimetic thruster is employed for its superior energetic efficiency, and the horizontal propellers are exploited for accurate maneuvering. While the documentation and 3D reconstruction of the underwater seabed is a consolidated aspect for the authors, the hybrid propulsion system represents the main innovation of the present work. The increase in efficiency achieved by this propulsion system allows the vehicle to perform a thorough and precise documentation of underwater remains within short distances, while exploiting the maximum possible autonomy. This article discusses the details of the development of all the vehicle compartments and their associated characteristics, focusing on the significance of this technology. In addition, the results of 3D reconstructions extrapolated from images taken during real field missions are presented.
-  D. Scaradozzi, L. Sorbi, F. Zoppini, G. Conte, P. A. Zapata Ramirez, and C. Cerrano, “Innovative strategy and process for underwater data gathering and results elaboration,” 22nd Mediterranean Conf. of Control and Automation (MED 2014), Palermo, pp. 652-657, 2014.
-  D. Scaradozzi, L. Sorbi, and F. Zoppini, “Tools and techniques for underwater archaeological sites documentation,” MTS/IEEE OCEANS 2013, San Diego, 2013.
-  D. Scaradozzi, L. Sorbi, and G. Conte, “Assisting Micro ROV pilots during underwater surveys,” in Assisted guidance system for Micro ROV in underwater data gathering missions, Proc. of the 20th Mediterranean Conf. of Control and Automation (MED 2014), Barcelona, pp. 1373-1378, 2012.
-  D. Scaradozzi, L. Sorbi, and G. Conte, “Assisted guidance system for Micro ROV in underwater data gathering missions,” Proc. of the 20th Mediterranean Conf. of Control and Automation (MED 2014), Barcelona, pp. 1373-1378, 2012.
-  G. Conte, D. Scaradozzi, and L. Sorbi, “Assisting Micro-ROV Operators During Surveys in Fragile Environments,” Sea Technol., Vol.53, No.4, pp. 56-60, 2012.
-  K. D. Le, H. D. Nguyen, and D. Ranmuthugala, “Development and control of a low-cost, three-thruster, remotely operated underwater vehicle,” Int. J. Automation Technol., Vol.9, No.1, pp. 67-75, 2015.
-  T. Salumäe, R. Raag, J. Rebane, A. Ernits, G. Toming, M. Ratas, and M. Kruusmaa, “Design principle of a biomimetic underwater robot U-CAT,” MTS/IEEE OCEANS 2014, St. John’s, 2014.
-  F. Bruno, M. Muzzupappa, A. Lagudi, A. Gallo, F. Spadafora, G. Ritacco, A. Angilica, L. Barbieri, N. Di Lecce, G. Saviozzi, C. Laschi, R. Guida, and G. Di Stefano, “A ROV for supporting the planned maintenance in underwater archaeological sites,” MTS/IEEE OCEANS 2015, Genoa, 2014.
-  B. Allotta, S. Baines, F. Bartolini , F. Bellavia, C. Colombo, R. Conti, R. Costanzi, C. Dede, M. Fanfani, J. Gelli, H. T. Gündogdu, N. Monni, D. Moroni, M. Natalini, M. A. Pascali, F. Pazzaglia, L. Pugi, A. Ridolfi, M. Reggiannini, D. Roig, O. Salvetti, and E. I. Tekdemir, “Design of a modular Autonomous Underwater Vehicle for archaeological investigations,” MTS/IEEE OCEANS 2015, Genoa, 2015.
-  G. Georgidas, A. German, A. Hogue, H. Liu, C. Prahacs, A. Ripsman, R. Sim, L. A. Torres, P. Zhang, M. Buehler, G. Dudek, M. Jenkin, and E. Milios, “AQUA: An aquatic walking robot,” IEEEE/RSJ Int. Conf. on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2004), Sendai, pp. 3525-3531, 2004.
-  M. Ikeda, S. Hikasa, K. Watanabe, and I. Nagai, “Motion Analysis of a Manta Robot for Underwater Exploration by Propulsive Experiments and the Design of Central Pattern Generator,” Int. J. Automation Technol., Vol.8, No.2, pp. 231-237, 2014.
-  H. Van Rein, D. S. Schoeman, C. J. Brown, R. Quinn, and J. Breen. “Fixed-station monitoring of a harbour wall community: the utility of low-cost photomosaics and scuba on hard-substrata,” Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, Vol.21, No.7, pp. 690-703, 2011.
-  H. Van Rein, D. S. Schoeman, C. J. Brown, R. Quinn and J. Breen, “Development of lowcost image mosaics of hardbottom sessile communities using SCUBA: comparisons of optical media and of proxy measures of community structure,” J. of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, Vol.92, No.1, pp. 49-62, 2012.
-  D. Lirman, N. Gracias, B. E. Gintert, A. C. R. Gleason, S. Negahdaripour, P. Kramer, and R. P. Reid, “Development and application of a video-mosaic survey technology to document the status of coral reef communities,” Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Vol.125, No.1-3, pp. 59-73, 2007.
-  N. Gracias and J. Santos-Victor, “Underwater mosaicing and trajectory reconstruction using global alignment,” IEEE OCEANS Conf. Record, Vol.4, pp. 2557-2563, 2001.
-  O. Pizarro, R. Eustice, and H. Singh, “Large area 3-D reconstructions from underwater optical surveys,” IEEE J. of Oceanic Engineering, Vol.34, No.2, pp. 150-169, 2009.
-  M. Johnson-Roberson, O. Pizarro, S. Williams, and I. Mahon, “Generation and visualization of large-scale three-dimensional reconstructions from underwater robotic surveys,” J. of Field Robotics, Vol.27, No.1, pp. 21-51, 2010.
-  M. Warren, P. Corke, O. Pizzaro, S. Williams, and B. Upcroft, “Visual sea-floor mapping from low overlap imagery using bi-objective bundle adjustment and constrained motion,” Australasian Conf. on Robotics and Automation (ACRA 2012), Wellington, 2012.
-  F. Bruno, G. Bianco, M. Muzzupappa, S. Barone, and A. V. Razionale, “Experimentation of structured light and stereo vision for underwater 3D reconstruction,” ISPRS J. of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, Vol.66, No.4 pp. 508-518, 2011.
-  X. Zhang, L. Li, and J. Yang, “Study on underwater dual-laser structured light system for ROV guiding,” Int. J. Automation Technol., Vol.8, No.4, pp. 584-591 , 2014.
-  M. Caccia, “Laser-triangulation optical-correlation sensor for ROV slow motion estimation,” IEEE J. of Oceanic Engineering, Vol.31, No.3, pp. 711-727, 2006.
-  B. Allotta, A. Caiti, L. Chisci, R. Costanzi, F. Di Corato, C. Fantacci, D. Fenucci, E. Meli, and A. Ridolfi, “Development of a navigation algorithm for autonomous underwater vehicles,” IFAC Workshop on Navigation, Guidance and Control of Underwater Vehicles (NGCUV 2015), Girona, Vol.28, Vol.2, pp. 64-69, 2015.
-  G. Conte, G. P. De Capua, and D. Scaradozzi, “Designing the NGC system of a small ASV for tracking underwater targets,” Robotics and Autonomous Systems, Vol.76 I. C, pp. 46-57, 2016.
-  G. Conte, L. Gambella, D. Scaradozzi, S. Zanoli, A. Caiti, V. Calabrò, A. Alcocer, J. Alves, B. Cardeira, R. Cunha, F. Curado, P. Oliveira, A. Oliveira, A. Pascoal, M. Rufino, L. Sebast~io, and C. Silvestre, “Underwater vehicle technology in the European research project VENUS,” Underwater Technology, Vol.28, No.4, pp. 175-185, 2009.
-  G. Conte, D. Scaradozzi, L. Sorbi, L. Panebianco, and D. Mannocchi, “ROS multi-agent structure for autonomous surface vehicles,” MTS/IEEE OCEANS 2015, Genoa, 2015.
-  G. Morganti, A. M. Perdon, G. Conte, and D. Scaradozzi, “Multi-agent system theory for modelling a home automation system” Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics), Vol.5517 LNCS (Part 1), pp. 585-593, 2009.
-  D. Scaradozzi, G. Palmieri, D. Costa, and A. Pinelli, “BCF swimming locomotion for autonomous underwater robots: a review and a novel solution to improve control and efficiency,” Ocean Engineering, Vol.130, pp. 437-453, 2017.
-  M. Sfakiotakis, D. M. Lane, and J. B. C. Davies, “Review of fish swimming modes for aquatic locomotion,” IEEE J. of Oceanic Engineering, Vol.24, No.2, pp. 237-252, 1999.
-  J. M. Anderson, et al., “Oscillating foils of high propulsive efficiency.” J. of Fluid Mechanics, Vol.360, pp. 41-72, 1998.
-  Z. Wang, G. Hang, J. Li, Y. Wang, and K. Xiao, “A micro robot fish with embedded SMA wire actuated flexible biomimetic fish,” Sensors and Actuators A: Physical, Vol.144, No.2, pp. 354-360, 2008.
-  M. J. Lighthill, “Note on the swimming of slender fish,” J. of fluid Mechanics, Vol.9 No.2, pp. 305-317, 1960.
-  D. S. Barrett, “The design of a flexible hull undersea vehicle propelled by an oscillating foil,” Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Ocean Engineering, 1994.
-  K. Hirata, “Development of experimental fish robot,” 6th Int. Symp. on Marine Engineering, pp. 711-714, 2000.
-  J. M. Anderson and K. C. Narender, “Maneuvering and stability performance of a robotic tuna,” Integrative and comparative biology, Vol.42, No.1, pp. 118-126, 2002.
-  J. Yu and W. Long, “Parameter optimization of simplified propulsive model for biomimetic robot fish,” Proc. of the IEEE Int. Conf. on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2005), pp. 3306-3311, 2005.
-  J. Liu, Jindong, and H. Huosheng, “Biological inspiration: from carangiform fish to multi-joint robotic fish,” J. of Bionic Engineering, Vol.7, No.1, pp. 35-48, 2010.
-  A. Suleman and C. Crawford, “Studies on hydrodynamic propulsion of a biomimetic tuna,” Underwater vehicles, Inzartsev, pp. 459-486, 2008.
-  D. Tzeranis, E. Papadopoulos, and G. Triantafyllou, “On the Design of an Autonomous Robot Fish,” Proc. of the 11th IEEE Mediterranean Conf. on Control and Automation (MED 2003), Rhodes, pp. 17-20, 2003.
-  C. Eloy, “Optimal Strouhal number for swimming animals,” J. of Fluids and Structure, Vol.30, pp. 205-208, 2012.
-  R. Hartley and A. Zisserman, “Multiple View Geometry in Computer Vision,” Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004.
This article is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.