Harbor AUV surveys, Spotting warm bodies in the water and continued Wavy deployments

13 July 2013
X8 seen from Bacamarte and diver in the water
Bruno Loureiro checking the drogue
João Pereira and a tag
Deploying Noptilus 1
Deploying Noptilus 1
Drogue on the water
Noptilus 1
Throwing the Wavy with the drogue
Wavy and drogue on the water
Pedro Calado with Wavy and drogue
Leaving to deploy the Wavy
Checking the X8
Kanna Rajan and Frederik Leira
Javier Gilabert and Kanna Rajan
Checking the results from the IR camera
Hugo Queirós operating with Neptus
Ricardo Bencatel, Margarida Faria and Frederik Leira
Operations Center
João Fortuna, Pedro Calado and the volunteer for the swim
João Fortuna working on X8 - 02
Renato Caldas and João Pereira with the drogue
People working on deck
Preparing to deploy the Wavy
João Fortuna and João Pereira working on X8 - 00
João Sousa and LT Robalo

Saturday was incrementally eventful especially for UAV flights. The Noptilus AUV did a sidescan survey near shore of the Sesimbra harbor. While transitioning from the Bacamarte which was positioned well away from shore, the vessel also deployed the Xtreme 2 AUV which continued to test the T-REX system. Surprisingly both the vehicles detected a temperature anomaly in the water column with their CTDs very near the mouth of the harbor. Xtreme used an LBL (Long Base Line) for accurate navigation near shore and performed 3 separate square Yo-Yo patterns to 25m depth around a centroid. A bug which prohibited them from continuous surveys dogged them the entire day.

The exciting news of the day was that an X8 UAV was able to fly (in manual mode) for a sustained period of time with the IR camera. While the Bacamarte and its RHIB were clearly visible in thermal imagery, we were surprised to see that the camera could spot a human (a Navy diver who had volunteered to jump in with a wet suite) swimming as well as being able to clear (albeit fleetingly) small markers for crab pots and fish traps. This from 70 to 120 meter altitude of the UAV. Continued problems with the autopilot controller and apparent GPS problems however caused recurrent problems in sustained UAV operations.

The Wavy drifter was deployed in three separate instances. The drogue and extra weight attached the previous day demonstrated it was a stable configuration going forward.


  • Drogue
  • Wavy
  • Thermal Images
  • Harbor Survey
  • Sesimbra