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Robot Dive Buddy

February 28 2015
Help us turn an OpenROV into your new favorite Robot Dive Buddy. Beep bop bloop blop!

February 28 2015


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Preparation Stage

As promised, here's news of the highly anticipated bonus expedition! SQUID: Samantha's Questionable, Utter Inverts Devotion. Specifically, and unsurprisingly, focused on the squishiest and most betentacled inverts out there--the squid!

Silly acronyms aside, I really want to see market squid in Monterey Bay. Last year I saw one egg case and couldn't stop thinking about it. I went diving as often as possible in hopes of glimpsing an elegant tentacle tip or just a flash of chromatophore pyrotechnics. But no dice. With a trusty Robot Dive Buddy, I'll be able to scout out the most likely squid hangouts during the season before jumping in the water. This photo gives you an idea of what such a squid soiree might look like.

The expeSQUIDtion is on!

(Photo by epic squid scientist Roger Hanlon via the super handy and free SIMON photo library)

Expedition Background

The California coast is beyond gorgeous. Dive down, and there are tiny menageries covering each rock. Towering kelp cathedrals provide a stopover and safe haven for local and migrant animals up and down the coast.

It's also bracing (cold). And nutrient-rich (murky). Parts are super rocky (inaccessible). Plus fishermen like to fish (lots of stray lines to run into).

I'd like to make an OpenROV an invaluable Robot Dive Buddy, helping divers check conditions, scope new sites and even collect samples.

We're already working on a prototype for a plankton tow attachment to turn a robot into a midwater sample collector. Next on the idea list: a manipulator arm to pick up dropped gear, an attachment to cut fishing line, a robot-sized secchi disc to measure visibility, and on and on! Sounds cool? Join us! Expedition partners wanted!

p.s. stay tuned for a bonus expedition...
p.p.s. don't be fooled by Pikachu, it has to do with squid!