Ocean Infinity's Kongsberg Hugin autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV) have achieved significant endurance milestones during testing thanks to new pressure tolerant batteries from Kraken Robotics.
The vehicles performed several missions to greater than 5,000 meters and an unprecedented mission of over 100 hours without recharging, while running a full survey payload. As a result, using Kraken batteries, Ocean Infinity can operate increased survey ranges to nearly 700 line-kilometers per deployment.
Using batteries from Kraken subsidiary, Kraken Power GmbH, Ocean Infinity is seeing an increase of almost 100% in energy capacity in the same physical form factor as the original stock batteries in their Hugin AUVs. From an operational perspective this gives Ocean Infinity considerable flexibility to optimize mission plans, increase area coverage, manage weather impact, reduce launch and recovery operations, and significantly increase value for their customers in even the most remote parts of the world’s oceans.
Kraken’s unique pressure tolerant gel encapsulation technology for lithium polymer batteries provides an attractively priced, more environmentally friendly, and superior alternative to the oil compensated batteries currently used for subsea battery applications. Kraken’s hot swappable batteries are modular and include an integrated battery management system within each battery module.
Karl Kenny, Kraken’s President and CEO, said, “We are very pleased to support Ocean Infinity’s AUV fleet battery upgrade. We started this new development effort in Q3, 2018, and our teams in Germany and Canada have worked tirelessly to deliver for Ocean Infinity. By the end of this year, we expect to have completed delivery of more than 1,300 kWh of batteries to Ocean Infinity. We look forward to continuing to support this important customer and strategic partner.”
Josh Broussard, Ocean Infinity’s Chief Technical Officer, said, “This week’s test results mark a milestone achievement. Our new, ground-breaking battery technology has effectively doubled the vehicles’ endurance and capacity to collect data in a single deployment. We now have the capability to conduct AUV missions of over 4 days duration without the need for a battery recharge or change out.
“By deploying this technology, we are able to reduce launch and recovery operations by 50% and in turn provide a safer, more efficient, and more weather tolerant operation to our clients. Combining this technology with our proven multi-AUV operation offers an unprecedented deep-water data acquisition and survey platform with nearly 700 km of range per AUV, further solidifying Ocean Infinity’s position as a leader in bringing advanced technology solutions to market.”