EPIC-DAUG: An Enhanced Propulsion Integrated Capability – Deep Autonomous Underwater Glider for Shore Launch/Recovery and High-Endurance Unattended Mapping

PI: Camilli, Richard (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)
Co-PI(s): Jakuba, Michael (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution) : Mallios, Angelos (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution) : Claus, Brian (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution) : Jones, Clayton (Teledyne Marine Systems) : Bingham, Brian (Naval Postgraduate School)
Start Year: 2019 | Duration: 3 years
Partners: Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Naval Postgraduate School, Teledyne Webb

Project Abstract:

Our team seeks to build upon our successful track record in the domain of autonomous vehicle research by developing a low-cost, high-endurance, deep autonomous underwater glider that is capable of operating in coordination with a wide range of commercially available autonomous surface vessels for conducting autonomous unattended mapping in coastal as well as deep-water environments in excess of 1000m. The design architecture of this vehicle extends the existing hybrid autonomous underwater glider hardware to provide a variable length modular payload bay in the forward section of the vehicle that is easily reconfigurable to support a wide range of high Technology Readiness Level physical, chemical, and biological sensors. This proposed vehicle, EPIC-DAUG (Enhanced Propulsion Integrated Capability – Deep Autonomous Underwater Glider) will overcome the navigation limitations of conventional autonomous underwater gliders, while still maintaining an ultra-low power regime. Its dead reckoning navigation system will be augmented with a one-way travel time acoustic transponder and Doppler Velocity Log. The one-way travel time acoustic net will be maintained by an autonomous surface vessel in order to provide drift-free positioning, enabling multibeam mapping missions in excess of 500km before recharge is required. Vehicle propulsion will be via buoyancy-drive and a dual thruster configuration, enabling the vehicle to operate in profiling as well as constant depth/altitude mode while also allowing for shore launch/recovery in shallow water and rapid transit. EPIC-DAUG is estimated to weigh <70kg in air, allowing it to be launched and recovered without the need for significant support infrastructure.

BAA: N00014-18-S-B007
BAA Topic: Autonomous mapping