The ocean floor has maintained its mysteries for millennia. Even though humans may know a lot about the Earth, space, and external planets, the water that composes most of our planet has eluded our knowledge base. There’s no better way than a friendly competition with a million dollar reward to encourage public interest in the sciences, technological advancements, and curiosity about our oceans.
Compared to the detailed maps displaying the surface of the Earth, ocean maps are in sore need of an update. Teams of students and professional researchers around the world have eagerly developed UAVs and underwater drones to accomplish the mission.
Hidden Beneath The Surface
Regarding the earth’s oceans and marine life, there is still so much that humans can learn. The XPRIZE Foundation was created to stimulate people to become innovative, explore ideas, and help the progression of technology and society. After much anticipation since 2015, the finalists and location for the Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE Foundation competition have been announced.
Eight teams will be competing with one another in an effort to map out the seafloor off of the coast of Kalamata, Greece. The competition injects a new energy into research of the world’s oceans. So much about what humans know regarding the sites of archaeological finds, forms of marine life, and specific geological features are murky.
Race To Capture The Map
The technology that each of the eight teams will use during the competition will be rigorously tested. The desire to push the boundaries of science and technology is intense, as each team will only have 24 hours to complete their goal. A minimum of 100 square miles of ocean floor will have to be successfully canvassed, up to a depth of 13,000 feet.
Unmanned autonomous vessels that are capable of traveling undersea and capturing high-resolution images are a must. If a team is to beat the clock and emerge the victor, they will need reliable technology that can create a map that identifies a minimum of ten specific features. Bragging rights and a four-million-dollar prize will be awarded to the winning team, while second place will be rewarded with one million dollars.
Uncharted Territory No More
The world’s oceans hold a vast amount of untapped resources and information. Emerging technology that can help better chart and study the oceans will be useful for climate change, industry, and preserving life on the planet. Surprisingly, only five percent of the world’s oceans have been fully explored, and understanding the sensitivity of the ocean to incoming cosmic rays would be beneficial.
The continuation of modern human society is dependent on maintaining healthy oceans, monitoring marine life cycles, and reducing greenhouse gasses. Recovery of ancient human artifacts, and reviewing the changing terrain of the oceans at levels where sunlight is non-existent is critical to human advancement. The secrets to life itself, medical advancements, and understanding the severity of human impact on the oceans may be furthered via this competition.
Are you curious to know what’s really under the sea? You can find out with an underwater drone that let you immerse yourself in ocean exploration, without having to put on a wetsuit. The average ROV has been predominantly used for commercial purposes, but now, everyday people can map the world’s waters with a helpful tech.
Ocean Ready Close-Up
Capturing breathtaking photos of life under the surface of the world’s major waterways is now easier than ever. The Aquarobotman Science & Technology Company has released the Nemo underwater drone for everyday individuals to maneuver. The company is based in Shenzen, China, and spent three years perfecting the technology for the Nemo before going public.
The Nemo was tested vigorously for six months and was used to explore underwater caves, check on ships, and photograph manta rays. Filmmakers, outdoor enthusiasts, and students can take advantage of the Nemo’s capabilities to gain a unique point-of-view of watery worlds.
High-Definition Specs That Wow
After enough tweaks and refinements, the Nemo is an ultra-stable drone because it uses a four-thruster system. This underwater ROV comes with a high-definition 4k, 30fps camera for capturing crystal clear images.
You can follow the path of the Nemo underwater using a smartphone app, or you can share the Nemo’s real-time view while wearing virtual reality goggles. This underwater drone can dive down to depths of 328 feet, and the quick change battery cell lasts up to three hours. If you enter a dark patch where there is not much light, or you want to take the Nemo out at night, there are LED modules to light the way.
Crowdfunding Fulfills A Dream
The Aquarobotman company utilized the power of people online to fund their project, and to gauge interest for the Nemo. Public interest in aerial drones has continued to surge in popularity, so recreational underwater drones are next to follow suit. The company only needed to raise $30,000, but managed to reach a goal of $84,078 with 78 backers.
The Nemo is a captivating underwater ROV because it can travel 3.9 knots, is controllable via iOS or Android, and includes high-end features. After a successful campaign, by November 2018, over 100 Nemo drones were delivered to 30 countries.
The Last Wild Frontier
Humans have managed to conquer the skies and land, but in-depth knowledge of our oceans are still a mystery. Exploring the deep sea has been challenging because of limitations in technology, air pressure, lack of oxygen, and extreme temperatures. Most ROV technology has been slated for use by commercial industries for tapping natural resources.
The race to map the oceans to gain a better understanding of climate change, undiscovered marine life, and understand how the oceans impact life on Earth require significant effort. Thanks to devices like the Nemo, members of the general public can captain personal exploration projects and collect data.