Autosub6000 Robot: A Deep Diving Long Range AUV
Autosub6000 is the latest in a series of Autosub vehicles developed by engineers at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton. The '6000' refers to the vehicle's 6000 metre (3.73 mile) depth rating, which makes it the deepest diving Autosub model so far, capable of reaching more than 90 percent of the ocean floor. Unlike remotely-operated vehicles (ROVs) that are powered from the ship by umbilical cables, free-swimming underwater vehicles like Autosub are powered by batteries. Earlier Autosubs were powered by regular D-cell batteries - 5500 of them, which took half a day to change. But Autosub6000 instead uses up to twelve rechargeable lithium-ion polymer battery packs. How long the battery packs last depends on the vehicle's speed and the power demands of the sensors that it is using. For our Cayman Trough missions, Autosub is carrying four battery packs, which should last for around 27 hours at usual speeds and with standard sensors. That endurance is plenty for our missions hunting deep-sea vents on the ocean floor. The battery packs can recharge fully in six hours, allowing rapid turnaround of the vehicle between missions.
|max. Depth||6000 m|
|Operation Time||70 hr|
- Country: England
- Company: National Oceanography Centre