Beer cans litter the seafoor in Boston Harbor in this image taken
with the VideoRay Pro 3 GTO ROV system. (Photo Credit: Rozalia Project for a Clean Ocean)
as the ability to operate and see in a variety of marine environments, carry out close-in work and wide area searches,
identify and mark locations, and pick up a variety of objects.
The project uses a VideoRay LLC (Phoenixville, Pennsylvania) Pro 4 micro-ROV, a BlueView Technologies Inc. (Seattle, Washington) 900-45 multibeam sonar, a KCF Technologies (State College, Pennsylvania) Smart Tether positioning
system, a Tritech International Ltd. (Aberdeen, Scotland)
StarFish 450F side scan sonar and a LYYN AB (Lund, Sweden) image enhancement system.
Collecting Debris From Boston Harbor
In July 2011, Rozalia Project was operating from the
Charlestown Navy Yard in Boston Harbor, running cleanup
and education programs. The cleanup focused on an area off
the docks of Courageous Sailing Center in 30 to 40 feet of
water, with an average visibility of 10 to 18 inches. Though
this was a target-rich environment with a seafoor covered
in debris, it was still important to stay organized, keep track
of areas cleaned and keep the ROV away from a section of
dock pilings that posed a fouling hazard for the tether.
The critical piece of equipment for this operation was the
BlueView multibeam sonar, mounted on the VideoRay Pro
3 GTO (Greater Thrust Option) ROV system. The BlueView
sonar revealed tires, large pieces of discarded metal, piles of
beer cans and plastic cups, as well as crabs walking across
the bottom. The ROV pilot was repeatedly able to fy the
VideoRay directly to specifc targets, such as a single can,
acquired from over 30 feet away. Once the VideoRay was
within 1 to 2 feet of the target, the LYYN image enhancement
system allowed enough visibility to use the manipulator to
retrieve the object, get it to the surface and return for more.
Cans, cups, utensils and food wrappers are among the
most frequently found items of debris recovered from the
bottom of waterways, foating on the surface and along the
shoreline. In this case, a large number of cans and plastic
cups were found clustered together in different sections of
this part of Boston Harbor, and underwater cleanup efforts
were focused on those objects. The cleanup progress was
sped along with the BlueView sonar's ability to reveal piles
of cans and cups with enough clarity for the Rozalia team to
count them while still 10 to 30 feet away.
Over three days of ROV operations and surface netting
around the docks, Rozalia Project's team picked up 880
DECEMBER 2012 / st