Multi-purpose Unmanned Surface Vehicle ("Marine Drone") Developed by Combining the Technologies from Hamadori Companies Can Undertake Measuring and Sampling at Sea
Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA), Windy Network Corporation, and Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC), based on the experience and development technology of unmanned surface vehicle (USV) operation accumulated to date, have successfully developed a multi-purpose USV, or so-called marine drone, capable of undertaking various applications including radioactive measurements. The drone was realized by making maximum use of the technologies of five companies in the Hamadori district in Fukushima Prefecture [KSE, Takeru Software, Kyoei Seiki, Bandai Marine, and Japan Automatic Machine Co., Ltd. (JAM)] and by bringing various ideas together beyond organizational boundaries.
During the course of development of this marine drone the team also jointly developed and installed a system that can detailed measure not only radiation but also water temperature and electric conductivity and collect submarine soil samples, making detailed monitoring possible of the estuary area around nuclear power plants. In addition, the team deployed an acoustic measurement system and achieved unprecedented seabed surveying by using an marine drone for the first time in the world.
This marine drone can also be used as a tool to reduce the time and cost of marine surveys currently conducted by manned vessels, enter environments too dangerous for humans, as well as research oceans, save lives, and be used in disaster prevention.
This accomplishment is supported by the Fukushima Regional Revitalization Commercial Business Development Subsidy Project 1 as part of the Fukushima Innovation Coast Framework.
The sale and survey service of this unmanned vessel will be commercialized by the end of FY2019.