OECI Technology Integration
A key objective of the NOAA Ocean Exploration Cooperative Institute (OECI) is to develop the tools and technology that enable ocean exploration activities to be conducted remotely or without human supervision. This goal is motivated not only by the vast extent of the ocean that remains unexplored but also by the new class of smaller oceanographic vessels that will require remote and autonomous operations to achieve their full potential. In these instances, uncrewed systems capable of autonomous exploration enable the ship to conduct its own exploration program, increasing a vessel’s ability to simultaneously explore a region using multiple technologies. However, this future gain in ocean exploration efficiency is only possible if we are able to develop, test, and validate fundamental collaboration concepts and protocols.
This expedition will bring together our OECI partners from the University of New Hampshire and their uncrewed surface vessel DriX, as well as Woods Hole Oceanographic Institutionʻs and autonomous underwater vehicle Mesobot and hybrid vehicle NUI. Over the course of the 16-day expedition, the team will test and demonstrate operational capabilities including vehicles (1) communicating with each other while they are simultaneously deployed; (2) being re-tasked based on information gained from a partner vehicle; and (3) demonstrating further advances in teleoperations with operators back on shore.
This expedition is funded by NOAA Ocean Exploration via the Ocean Exploration Cooperative Institute.