92nd American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting (January 22-26, 2012)

Wednesday, 25 January 2012: 11:15 AM
Simple Artificial and Computational Intelligence Goes a Long Way When Applied to Ocean Science: An Example Using An Unmanned Surface Craft in Coastal Ocean
Room 242 (New Orleans Convention Center )
Chunyan Li, Louisiana State Univ., Baton Rouge, LA; and E. Weeks

The advancement of sensor-, electronic, and computational technology has allowed a tremendous opportunity opened up to a wide range of applications in environmental science. Taking advantage of the new technological development to serve the environmental studies including meteorology, hydrology, oceanography, etc., may seem to be a difficult task. The actual implementation however does not always have to be really complicated. We have demonstrated this by the development and implementation of several unmanned surface crafts or vehicles to conduct various surveys in estuaries, coastal bays and lagoons, and tidal channels for hydrodynamics (flow velocities), bathymetry, and geology. We use mostly off-the-shelf components and a microcontroller to build the vehicle and wrote the control codes using simple BASIC language. We have done numerous surveys serving state and federally funded research projects. We have used the unmanned research craft to map small scale eddies that had not been documented and measured before. Our experience demonstrates that simple artificial and computational intelligence can really go a long way and we anticipate a much greater popularity and many more applications of such automated research vehicles in the near future for more, better, and faster data collection.

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