Micro-sensor may improve underwater robot technology

By on December 14, 2012

Scientists at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore have invented new underwater sensors that use water pressure and imaging technology to map their surroundings, according to ScienceDaily. The sensors work in a similar way to feelers found on cave fish.

The sensors yield 3-D images that could potentially replace the ones obtained by cameras on autonomous underwater vehicles, submarines and boats. They’re an improvement over sonar devices that emit waves which could harm some marine animals.

With an area of 3.24 mm, the micro-sensors need only low levels of power to operate. They are being deployed on AUVs developed by researchers at the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology, which is working to integrate the technology with underwater robots and autonomous surface vessels.

PhD student Kottapalli Ajay Giri Prakash; Assoc Prof Miao Jianmin and Research Associate Mohsen Asadniaye Fard Jahromi holding the new underwater MEMS sensors. (Credit: Nanyang Technological University)

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