"All-in-one surveying crew ": Advanced Navigation Launches AUV Hydrus

Credit: Advanced Navigation
Credit: Advanced Navigation

Advanced Navigation, an AI navigation and robotics systems manufacturer, has an autonomous underwater vehicle Hydrus, which is so small, it can be carried on a plane.

"’We have seen a revolution occur in the aerial drone market, where smaller, easy to use drones have opened new opportunities in applications previously restricted by cost. Hydrus is intended to offer the same accessibility to the underwater world.’’ said Xavier Orr, CEO and co-founder of Advanced Navigation.

The company said that Hydrus combined the most advanced navigation, sonar, and communication capabilities of any AUV. 

This technology is combined with a 4K60 camera "in an incredibly small form factor."

"A 4K 60 FPS camera coupled with powerful lighting ensures the highest quality video and photography. An AI image processing system dynamically balances camera settings and lighting, and compensates for turbidity, even in the most challenging conditions." the company explains.

"Hydrus hugely simplifies underwater data collection and inspection and overcomes many existing cost barriers. It is targeted at applications requiring high-resolution images and video with precise geo-referenced data," Advanced Navigation said.

All-in-one surveying crewCredit: Advanced Navigation

"Hydrus is effectively an all-in-one surveying crew, alleviating the need for expensive ROVs/AUVs, survey vessels, highly trained operators, and divers. Providing unparalleled flexibility, ease of use, and affordability, Hydrus is the drone revolution, underwater," Advanced Navigation said.

According to the company, with Hydrus, 3D missions can be planned in minutes, without specific knowledge or training. The acoustic communication capabilities allow users to monitor and adjust missions on the fly, the company said.

"Hydrus is small enough to be carried on a plane, and can be launched and retrieved by a single person. No special watercraft is required. Upon mission completion, data can be wirelessly retrieved using a computer," Advanced Navigation said.

Hydrus features dynamic AI guidance with obstacle avoidance, altitude control and image quality control. It integrates a USBL, DVL, INS, acoustic and optical modems all tightly coupled into one compact package. These capabilities place Hydrus well beyond the current state of the art and allow unskilled operators to easily perform advanced missions, Advanced Navigation said.

According to the company, Hydrus can undertake missions of up to 3 hours duration, has a range of 9 km, with a maximum speed of 4 knots and a 3,000 m (10,000 ft) depth rating. Also, proprietary hubless thrusters on Hydrus prevent impellers from getting jammed with ropes or seaweed.  

 Credit: Advanced Navigation 

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