A few days ago we invited anyone who was interested to ask Principal Investigator Dr Blair Thornton (University of Southampton) and the international engineering team on Schmidt Ocean Institute’s research vessel Falkor questions about underwater robotics and our current expedition.
The experts onboard are conducting research on dynamically changing environments like cold seeps with four different robots, each one with different capabilities. Yet the underwater robots used will not be just mindless gatherers of data, they will make important decisions based on an increased awareness of their surroundings.
Here are many of the questions we received. Enjoy!
What are some specific applications that underwater drones can be deployed in?
Mapping the seafloor is a big application area. People are also looking into intervention and manipulation missions but for now, observation is the area autonomous underwater vehicles, or underwater drones) are having the biggest impact.