Gideon Billings is a PhD pre-candidate in Robotics at the University of Michigan in the DROP lab. His areas of specialization are in computer vision and perception and underwater manipulation. Gideon is interested in applying deep learning methods in computer vision towards object recognition, pose estimation, and visual servoing in the underwater domain.

On this cruise, Gideon will be working with his lab’s Iver 3 AUV, with an added custom stereo camera system for doing visual surveys of the ocean bottom. He has been supporting active development of this vehicle, and this cruise will be the first test of the AUV with upgraded cameras. Gideon will be helping operate the AUV, along with the lab’s small ROV and diver operated stereo camera rig, to collect image datasets which will be used to develop computer vision and localization algorithms.

Gideon is an avid scuba diver and is passionate about the ocean and what lies beneath. His past field work experiences include operating his lab’s Iver 3 AUV on Lake Michigan and taking image surveys of Bermuda’s coral reefs with a diver operated rig. His hope is that his contributions to technological and scientific advancement will help to recover and preserve our ocean habitats.