Hardware ROV simulation facility for the evaluation of novel underwater manipulation techniques
In OCEANS 2009 - EUROPE, 2009. OCEANS 2009, (OCEANS-09), 11.5.-14.5.2009, Bremen, o.A., May/2009. ISBN: 978-1-4244-2523-5.
Even simple manipulation tasks using a ROV-based manipulator are very demanding in a deep-sea environment. In addition to the forces which occur as a result of steering commands to hover in front of a certain target, the remotely operated underwater vehicle is also exposed to certain external forces, like currents, waves or the force induced by the supply tether. The resulting translation and rotation have to be compensated by the operator while trying to fulfill his manipulation task. To support the operator with such tasks as mentioned above, the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) in Bremen has developed within the CManipulator project autonomous manipulation behaviors, e.g. for gripping transponders or plugging deep sea cable connectors. These behaviors need to be evaluated under realistic dynamic conditions on a day-to-day basis.
In this paper we describe a hardware facility to simulate ROV movements in a water basin for the evaluation of above mentioned novel underwater manipulation techniques as it was build at the underwater robotics department of the DFKI in Bremen.