In March 2022, MIR students have come to IFREMER, French National Institute for Ocean Science, to perform two practical classes. One dealing with underwater communication and another one dedicated to underwater robotics.
The former consisted in using two acoustic modems moored at sea near a dock to send and receive text messages. The students have been able to observe and measure those signals emitted by the modems as well as environmental noises thanks to an hydrophone linked to a digital acquisition system.
The latter class has given the students the opportunity to use and deploy a small underwater Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) in real conditions. The students had to follow the classical steps of underwater ROV deployment, going from ensuring the electrical cabling to the buoyancy checks and adjustments. Then, they have been able to pilot the ROV, analyze the sensors’ measurements available in real-time useful for piloting and get a feel of the difficulties that are associated with the piloting of ROVs when they are below the surface and hence out-of-sight.
A tour of IFREMER underwater vehicles was given to students. They’ve been able to see the Nautile, which is the only manned 6000 m depth rated research submarine in France, as well as Autonomous underwater vehicles (AsterX, UlyX) and Remotely Operated Vehicles as VICTOR.