Ocean Systems Lab  
Ocean Systems Lab Heriot-Watt University Ocean Systems Laboratory

Experimental Capabilities

This page describes facilities and experimental capabilities of the Ocean Systems Laboratory.

Offshore Hyball, manufactured by Hydrovision, is an important tool for research activities in the lab. Given its ability to go 300 meters underwater (500 meters umbilical), equipped with a 360 degree vision system, obstacle avoidance sonar and 3 jaw manipulator, it is a powerful instrument for exploration, tracking, and documenting the research activities of the OSL. Hyball is an adequate solution for many survey applications and as a platform to monitor autonomous missions of other vehicles.It can also be used for search and recovery of autonoumous vehicles in case of failure.

Offshore Hyball

Remus is another AUV from the Ocean Systems Laboratory, manufactured by Hydroid Inc. This robot is a high-speed (up to 5 knots) transit AUV designed for operation in coastal environments up to 100 meters in depth. It serves as a platform for high-level algorithm evaluation and experimental validation of new autonomous software systems. Fitted with an extra processor, we can extend its normal use by designing and adding our own payloads. It successfully participated in a number of experiments which also included DTC (Defence Technology Centre) multi-AUV coordination trials with Nessie III and Autonomous Pipeline Tracking (AUTOTRACKER project)

Remus 100

PAIV (Prototype Autonomous Inspection Vehicle)is a hover capable auv based on a converted inspection class ROV. The prototype vehicle was developed by Subsea 7 and SeeByte Ltd.On completion of proving trials,the Prototype AIV vehicle has now been donated to the Lab for research based work.

PAIV rear view

Nessie auv`s The first Nessie AUV was developed in 2006 for the Student Autonomous Underwater Challenge Europe (SAUC-E) competition.It was designed to advance Autonomous Underwater Vehicle technology. Held every year this competition encourages young engineers and scientists to think about underwater technology and its future possibilities, as well as fostering ties between the students and the organizations involved in AUV technologies.

Nessie IV (2009)Nessie 2012


Hyball ROV - Offshore Hyball specs
Lab Facilities - Wet Tank and Cartesian plotter system
Micro AUV - Micro AUV specification
Nessie 2012 AUV - Nessie 2012 AUV description and specification
Nessie IV AUV - Nessie IV AUV Description and Specification
OceanSHELL - Ocean Systems Laboratory SHELL library
PAIV AUV - PAIV AUV Description and Specification
REMUS AUV - REMUS AUV specification
Trials Facilities - Trials Facilities
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