Top 5 Robotic Explorations of 2016

Top 5 Robotic Explorations of 2016

Jan 3, 2017 @ 17:17 |

Our universe is full of mysteries and challenges. Researchers want to explore these mysteries with the help of Robotic Explorations. Several researchers used robots to explore the human challenging areas. The top 5 Robotic Explorations of 2016 are presented here.

In this century, there are two main focus areas of science and technology; first one is the exploring the Universe and second one is the Helping humans through scientific innovation specially for needy people in medical area. 

The World is already showing keen interest in exploring the Universe as USA landed a Robot on Mars and India launched the Mars orbital to explore the mars planet and many more countries are coming. The robots are going to help us like anything in exploring the universe because robot can reach those parts of universe where human even cannot survive.

These are top 5 explored areas in 2016.

1. Robotic Exploration Discovered Deepest Underwater Cave

This discovery by the Krzysztof Starnawski and team along with ROV beats the previous record holder, 392-meter (1,286-foot) Pozzo del Merro in Italy, by 12 meters (39 feet).

Deepest Underwater Cave

A team of explorers led by the legendary Polish diver Krzysztof Starnawski in the Czech Republic has just discovered the world’s deepest underwater cave measuring at least 404 meters (1,325 feet) deep.

Polish explorer Krzysztof Starnawski has been tried several time over the last 20 years but never been able to measure beyond a depth of 370 metres (1,214). Starnawski first explored this Czech cave, named Hranická Propast, in 1999.

But this time, during the expedition carried out on September 27, the exploration team employed a remotely-operated underwater robot (ROV) to explore the deeper, narrower depths of the cave.

Custom-built ROV made by GRALmarine is used to explore the cave as deep as possible.

The most important part of the mission, deep exploration was done by the robot. Starnawski scuba dived down to 200 meters just before the ROV’s deployment to put in the new line for the robot to follow. The goal was to give the ROV a good start from there to the deepest part of the cave.

Some of the world’s other deep dives:

  • Pozzo del Merro in Italy (392 metres)
  • Zacaton in Mexico (339 metres)
  • Vrelo Cave in Macedonia (330 metres)
  • Boesmansgat in South Africa (270 metres)
  • Dean’s Blue Hole in the Bahamas (202 metres)

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2. Rare Glimpse into Antarctic Underwater World

Australian Antarctic Division scientists deployed a ROV through a small hole drilled in the sea ice and has captured a rare glimpse beneath the Antarctic sea ice, revealing a thriving, colourful world.

(Image: Dominic Hall)

The footage was recorded on a camera attached to a Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) deployed by scientists under the sea ice at O’Brien Bay, near Casey research station in East Antarctica.

This footage reveals a habitat that is productive, colourful, dynamic and full of a wide variety of biodiversity, including sponges, sea spiders, urchins, sea cucumbers and sea stars.

These communities live in water that is -1.5°C year round and are covered in 1.5 metre thick sea ice for 10 months of the year.

Occasionally an iceberg may move around and wipe out an unlucky community, but mostly the sea ice provides protection from the storms that rage above, making it a relatively stable environment in which biodiversity can flourish.

Australian Antarctic Division Biologist, Dr Glenn Johnstone, said the footage was captured while scientists retrieved a SeapHox pH data logger, which has been recording the acidity, oxygen, salinity and temperature of the seawater on an hourly basis since November 2015.

Australian Antarctic Division PhD student James Black said the ROV was deployed through a small hole drilled in the sea ice and also collected diatoms and sediment.

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3. OceanOne, Stanford’s Humanoid Robot, Explores an Abandoned Shipwreck

Oussama Khatib, Professor of Computer science department, Stanford and his team made a humanoid robot, OceanOne, for exploration in deep oceans. OceanOne outfitted with human vision, haptic force feedback and an artificial brain – in essence, a virtual diver.

The flagship of King Louis XIV sank here in 1664, 20 miles off the southern coast of France, and no human had touched the ruins – or the countless treasures and artifacts the ship once carried – in the centuries since. OceanOne explores La Lune, a 17th century shipwreck off the southern coast of France. With guidance from a team of skilled deep-sea archaeologists, Khatib hovered OceanOne precisely over the vase using Joystick control.

OceanOne, a new humanoid robotic diver from Stanford, explores La Lune, a 17th century shipwreck off the southern coast of France. (Image credit: Frederic Osada and Teddy Seguin/DRASSM)

After the success, Khatib hopes that in future,  OceanOne will take highly skilled underwater tasks too dangerous for human divers. “OceanOne will be your avatar,” Khatib said. “The intent here is to have a human diving virtually, to put the human out of harm’s way. Having a machine that has human characteristics that can project the human diver’s embodiment at depth is going to be amazing.”

OceanOne: The robot, called OceanOne, is powered by artificial intelligence and haptic feedback systems, allowing human pilots an unprecedented ability to explore the depths of the oceans in high fidelity.

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4. Curiosity Mars Rover Checks Odd-looking Iron Meteorite

NASA’s Curiosity Mars Rover is exploring the Mars since 2012. Curiosity was launched five years ago this month, on Nov. 26, 2011, from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. It landed inside Gale Crater, near the foot of Mount Sharp, in August 2012.

In Oct 2016, Curiosity’s Mast Camera (Mastcam) found odd-looking rock, called “Egg Rock” on red planet. It contains iron, nickel and phosphorus, plus lesser ingredients, in concentrations still being determined through analysis of the spectrum of light produced from dozens of laser pulses at nine spots on the object.

Iron meteorites typically originate as core material of asteroids that melt, allowing the molten metal fraction of the asteroid’s composition to sink to the center and form a core.

iron meteorite
(Image: NASA)

“Iron meteorites provide records of many different asteroids that broke up, with fragments of their cores ending up on Earth and on Mars,” said ChemCam team member Horton Newsom of the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque. “Mars may have sampled a different population of asteroids than Earth has.”

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5. ExoMars TGO Reaches Mars Orbit While EDM, Schiaparelli chrased

The ‘Exo’ in ‘ExoMars’ refers to the study of ‘exobiology’, the possible existence of life beyond Earth (sometimes also referred to as ‘astrobiology’). Mars shows evidence for having had environmental conditions (suitable temperatures and liquid water) early in its history, some 3.5 billion years ago, capable of supporting primitive life. The primary goal of the ExoMars programme is to search for signs of past and extant life on Mars, hence the name.

The ExoMars programme comprises two missions.

  1. The first launched on 14 March 2016 and consists of the Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) and the Entry, descent and landing Demonstrator Module (EDM, also known as Schiaparelli).
  2. The second launch is planned for 2020 and will include two elements on the surface of Mars, namely a rover and a fixed science platform. TGO will also act as a communications relay for the 2020 rover.
(Image: ESA)

ExoMars is a joint endeavour between ESA and Russia’s Roscosmos space agency, and comprises the Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) and the Schiaparelli entry, descent and landing demonstrator.

In first phase ESA launched TGO and EDM and TGO reached successfully in Mars orbit but EDM crashed. This was a test for phase 2 mission which was 50- 50 success and failure.

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