A recovery mission of historical artifacts from the 17th century was recently attempted by underwater archaeologists along with a humanoid to explore the remains of King Louis XIV’s flagship La Lune. Their voyage to the bottom of the Mediterranean turned out to be one of the first steps for robots underwater, thanks to Stanford.
OceanOne, A humanoid robot capable of diving underwater has “human-vision, haptic force feedback and an artificial brain.” The Standford humanoid is a five-foot “virtual diver” invented for the purpose of studying coral reefs in the red sea. Moreover, the humanoid is capable of achieving extreme depth that is difficult or sometimes impossible for human divers, especially when the process of research is time consuming. The “tail” section contains the onboard battery along with its eight thrusters that help the robot with its movements.
The physical attributes of OceanOne has been designed with the idea of human’s physical structure. The frontal section of the body has two eyes for stereoscopic vision and mechanical arms for quick and light movements underwater.
The unique traits of OceanOne lie in its vision and interaction with objects around it. The robot can be used to access environments that are fragile to be researched by humans. Especially recoveries like La Lune, a shipwreck which is recorded to have occurred 350 years ago in the coast of France and will physically be examined for the first time.
Unlike our interaction, OceanOne can send live feedback through its force sensors in its wrists. These signals transmit haptic feedback to the pilot. With the help of its artificial brain, the process helps archaeologists to make certain the arms do not crush delicate objects. Meanwhile, its navigation system keeps the humanoid floating steadily even in unstable environments. This robot could indeed be the first step to help humans plan expeditions that cannot be physical attempted due to harsh environment or dangerous marine animals.