While commercially available Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs) are routinely used in survey missions, a new set of applications exist which clearly demand intervention capabilities. The maintenance of permanent underwater observatories, submerged oil wells, cabled sensor networks, pipes and the deployment and recovery of benthic stations are but a few of them. Nowadays, these tasks are addressed using manned submersibles or work-class ROVs (Remotely Operated Vehicles), equipped with teleoperated arms.
Current Intervention-AUVs (I-AUVs) prototypes are usually big and complex systems exhibiting only a limited set of functionalities including docking and fixed based manipulation on a subsea panel, as well as search and recovery of simple objects. On the other hand, as in the case of human manipulation, more sophisticated applications, like transporting and manipulating bulky objects, or assembling complex structures underwater, would require several I-AUVs working cooperatively.
Underlying the main drawbacks found in these aforementioned systems are the current technology limitations in several domains like wireless communications, human-robot interaction, multisensory based manipulation, power supply, mechatronics, networking, cooperative robots, to mention but a few. Moreover, if we are looking for new autonomy levels is clear that cognition developments will be also a cornerstone, trying to replace dexterities associated with the human expert on the intervention domain by means of Artificial Intelligence (AI) procedures.
This Workshop aims to review and rethinking current technologies, foundations and new approaches for getting a step forward beyond the current "underwater intervention systems" state of the art. To this aim, a group of well-known researchers, with complimentary expertise, will explain and discuss the last results from different knowledge areas needed to progress towards this aforementioned long term objective.
The development of a new kind of I-AUVs, able to work autonomously, alone or in a cooperative way, opens the door to face the multi-purpose underwater intervention problem, with potential applications not only in the offshore and nuclear industries, but also in archeology, oceanography or search and rescue missions, among other purposes.
At the end of the workshop, an open discussion will be guided by organizers in order to identify new synergies and bridging the gaps between current developments and the cutting age technology needed for the future intervention systems, promoting also new collaborations by sharing data, experimental setup, environment, and ideas.
The main targeted audience will be the robotics research community, from both academy and industry, mainly working in the fields of underwater systems and marine technologies. Industry members possibly interested in the exploitation of recent research contributions will be another important audience. Specifically, we are targeting audiences in the underwater robotics community who are interested in the aforementioned topics of interest.
Moreover, researchers in different areas, outside underwater robotics, like machine learning, artificial intelligence, mechatronics, grasping and manipulation, HRI, SLAM, communications, etc. will also find the topics of interest, together with any other robotic researcher not (yet) involved in marine applications.
In summary, not only experts in this matter but also those researchers not yet familiarized with underwater robotics will be attracted for new contexts where applied their knowledge in a field that represents an authentic challenge for all kind of current technologies and approaches.
Topics of interest
Autonomous underwater vehicles for Intervention (I-AUV’s)
Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV’s)
Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV’s)
Multisensory based manipulation algorithms
Guidance, navigation and control
Cooperative control architectures
Acoustic/optical image processing algorithms
Multimodal map building algorithms
Human-Robot Interaction (HRI)
Underwater Wireless Communication