Sea Technology

MAR 2018

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26 ST | March 2018 www.sea-technology.com turbidity sensor. All the data collected by these sensors were integrated in real time with PROTEUS's telemetry (to synchronize and geolocate all data). During the surveys, the communication system al- lowed the collected data to be accessible in real time to the scientists so that they could modify the sampling area according to the previously acquired data and the vehicle's position. A small trimaran vessel was towed by PROTEUS during its wide-area surveys. This trailer was used to host particularly heavy or bulky sensors: an automatic wa- ter multisampler provided by IAMC-CNR for the study of microbial biomass and bacteria respiratory activity; a plankton multisampler; and a Sea-Bird SBE 19plus v2 multiprobe sensor, provided by ISMAR-CNR. Drones Besides PROTEUS, two drones were also used during the surveys for different purposes: OTTO and Splash. OTTO is an octocopter drone originally developed by Italdron and later modified by ISSIA-CNR, charac- terized by a high pay load capacity and able to per- form high-quality professional flight missions in high flight-safety conditions to achieve specialized operations in critical areas. In this mission, it was equipped with var- ious video cameras, a FLIR A35 thermal camera and an aerial multisensor (humidity, temperature and air quality sensors) system provided by IBIMET-CNR. The OTTO drone collected pictures and videos of the area and exploited the various sensors mounted on board to acquire data, enabling reconstruction of the character- istics of the air column overlying the area inspected by PROTEUS. This enables reconstructing a thermal pattern and performing a cross-check of the data coming from air measurements and from the CTD mounted aboard PROTEUS. The Splash drone was used to record videos and imag- es of the coordinated operations performed by PROTEUS and OTTO for documentary and dissemination purposes. Results All ISSIA-CNR's unmanned vehicles are equipped with a sophisticated control system that allows various working modes (manual, semiautomatic and automatic) and can be remotely controlled by means of a radio link and a control station (command console). All three ve- hicles were remotely operated by personnel on board a small (31-ft.) workboat, MS Teisten, which was kept at a safe distance from the glacier front. A customized ply- wood platform (2.5 by 2.5 m) was mounted on the stern of the boat for drone take-off and landing. The marine data acquired by PROTEUS, together with the atmospheric data collected by OTTO, allow scientists to obtain a complete characterization of the whole wa- ter-air column close to the glacier fronts. All the collected data will be available shortly on the Italian Arctic Data Center (IADC) website at http://arctic- node.dta.cnr.it/cnr. From a robotics point of view, the scientific campaign carried out in Kongsfjorden in 2017 demonstrated that unmanned vehicle technology is mature and can be of great help to scientists involved in acquiring atmospheric and marine data near tidewater glaciers. The adoption of a reconfigurable and portable robotic tool like PROTEUS, designed with an eye to usability in polar regions, has brought a huge advantage to the scien- tific research. Lessons for future data acquisition efforts are one of the most important results of this campaign. To see part of the campaign in action, a video show- ing PROTEUS and OTTO operating June 23, 2017 near the Blomstrandbreen glacier is available at http://bit. ly/2hxLpL4. Acknowledgments The authors wish to thank Arturo Argentieri, Giorgio Bruzzone, Pierpaolo Soria and Edoardo Spirandelli for their fundamental fieldwork, design and development contribution during the scientific campaign. System design, development and data processing were possible thanks to the essential work of Giuseppe Camporeale, Roberta Ferretti, Mauro Giacopelli and An- drea Ranieri. The authors also wish to thank their colleagues at CNR and Tuscia University for their collaboration and all the staff of the Base Artica Dirigibile Italia for their kind and professional support. References For a list of references, contact Angelo Odetti at ange- lo. odetti@ge.issia.cnr.it. ST Gabriele Bruzzone is a researcher who heads the Field and Interactions Robot- ics research group of the Institute of Studies of Intelligent Systems for Auto- mation, National Research Council (IS- SIA-CNR), Italy. He has been working for more than 20 years designing, developing and testing marine autonomous robotic vehicles. He was in charge of the UVASS project and the Svalbard 2015 and 2017 scientific campaigns. Angelo Odetti is a research fellow at ISSIA-CNR and a Ph.D. student at DITEN- UNIGE. He is a marine engineer and naval architect with a back- ground in air cushion technology research. He de- signed the general layout and structural and naval components of the e-URoPe, P2ROV and PROTE- US. He participated in the 2017 Svalbard mission. Massimo Caccia is the director of ISSIA-CNR, with a focus on UMVs and mo- bile robots for ship structure inspection. He is involved in the EC proj- ects EX- CELLABUST Excelling LABUST in marine robotics, FLAG-ERA Robocom++ and BRIDGES (Bringing together Research and Industry for the Development of Glider Environmental Services). NEW BLOG! seatechnologymagazine.com S EA T ECHNOLOGY

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