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 Visitors since Jan 2010


News, events, milestones

Relevant dates in reverse cronological order:


OceanSys researcher awarded by IEEE/OES

Bruno Ferreira, has received a $2,000.00 Student Scolarship from the Ocean Engineering Society of the IEEE, for his PhD. research on ocean engineering. (link to OES Student Scolarship Program)



Robotic Sailing awarded during WRSC 2013

FASt participated in the World Robotic Sailing Championship, between 2 and 6 September 2013, in Brest, France (link to organization website). The Portuguese team participated with two autonomous sailboats, having come in first place in the “Student’s sailboat” category and receiving the “École Navale Endurance Special Award”.  (>> more information)



OceanSys/INESC TEC demonstration in La Spezia, Italy

Between 15 and 19 July, 10 researchers from OceanSys and INESC TEC participate in a demonstration of technological developments for the FP-7 ICARUS Project. (>> more information)



Robotics EXercise 2013 in Sesimbra

Several robotic assets from OceanSys have been employed during REX'13 -- Robotics EXercise 2013, an event organized by CINAV, the Research Center of the Portuguese Navy. (>> more information, in Portuguese)



MARES shipped to Brazil

A custom version of the MARES AUV was shipped to Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora, to a research group led by Prof. Leonardo Honório. The AUV will be mainly used for applied research in underwater navigation and control.



AcousticRobots'13 experiment

The FASt autonomous sailboat and a Slocum electric glider of OceanSys have been used to capture underwater sounds off the coast of Sesimbra, in Portugal. Both vehicles were employed due to their minute acoustic signature, and they've carried a self recording device, SR-1, from MarSensing, Lda. The AcousticRobots'13 experiment had the support of the Portuguese Navy, and it was performed from the NRP Blaus. Media coverage (in Portuguese): clip1, clip2, (link to Youtube video)



OceanSys participates in Robotics week

Robotics Route has taken place between the 30th November and 1st December, included in the European Robotics Week. The OceanSys lab was open for dissemination of science activities related to underwater robotics.  (>> more information)



OceanSys Researcher awarded during Oceans'12

Bruno Ferreira, a PhD. candidate, received the 2nd place at the Student Poster Competition, during the MTS/IEEE Conference Oceans'12. This conference was held in Hampton Roads, Virginia, USA, and the poster was entitled "Towards cooperative localization of an acoustic pinger" . (link to Oceans'12 Student Poster Program)



MARES AUV at the ASD Convention

The MARES AUV was displayed during the Convention of the Aerospace and Defence Industries Association of Europe (ASD), held in Lisbon, between 10 and 12 October.



FASt world champion during WRSC 2012

The FAST sailboat has won the first place in the 5th World Robotic Sailing Championship, which took place between 17 and 21 September in Cardiff, Wales (link to organization site). The participation in this event was supported by FEUP, INESC TEC, the AFCEA Educational Foundation (as part of the "Science Teaching Tools" programme), the Clube Naval de Leça and Escola Naval da Marinha.  (>> more information)



Implementation of SUNSET on ASVs

The SUNSET framework, developed by the Senses Lab at the University of Rome "La Sapienza", has been integrated on board the OceanSys ASVs, Zarco and Gama. Roberto Petroccia and Daniele Spaccini visited our lab for field trials in the Douro river, between July and August. During these trials, we've demonstrated the networking capability of SUNSET in the coordinated operation of ASVs using the acoustic channel for communication.   (>> more information)



Mission Planning Kick off Meeting

The Kick Off Meeting of the EDA Project Mission Planning, was held in Linkoping, Sweden, and it was attended by Aníbal Matos and Nuno Abreu.



OceanSys technology at Sea Forum 2012

Both the MARES AUV and FASt autonomous sailboat were displayed during Sea Forum ("Fórum do Mar", in Portuguese), held in Matosinhos, Portugal, between 10 and 12th May.



Implementation of SUNSET on MARES

The SUNSET framework, developed by the Senses Lab at the University of Rome "La Sapienza", has been integrated on board the MARES AUV. Following a few weeks of customization, Roberto Petroccia and Daniele Spaccini visited our lab to test the solution, between 15th and 17th February.   (>> more information)



ICARUS Project started

The ICARUS Project concentrates on the development of unmanned SAR technologies for detecting, locating and rescuing humans. It is a research project, funded by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Enterprise and Industry (global budget: 17.5M€) which aims to develop robotic tools which can assist “human” crisis intervention teams.  (>> more information)



TriMARES shipped to Brazil

TriMARES was shipped to Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora, the leading institution in the Lajeado Project.



TriMARES video presentation

Nuno Cruz presents TriMARES highlights in a video for "Exame Informática", a Portuguese technology magazine. (link to video, in Portuguese)



TriMARES validated in fresh water

Following the successfull trials in the water tank, TriMARES was tested in the Douro river.



TriMARES on the news

Aníbal Matos, Nuno Cruz and Leonardo Honório (Univ. Juiz de Fora, Brazil) were interviewed in a TVI24 "Inovadores" Program. (link to video, in Portuguese with subtitles).



MARES AUV at the Science, Teaching and Innovation Exhibition

INESC Porto participated in the 9th edition of the University of Porto’s Science, Teaching and Innovation Exhibition that took place between 17th and 20th March at the Rosa Mota Pavilion in Porto. The underwater robot MARES captured the attention of the young visitors.



LSA@ISEP joins the Robotics Unit at INESC Porto

INESC Porto and ISEP (Higher Engineering Institute in Porto) formalised the merger of their robotics groups. The Memorandum of Understanding was signed during an exhibition of robotic equipment that included the first public appearance of TriMARES. The new Robotics Unit at INESC Porto now includes approximately 50 researchers, aiming to take on a more international dimension and look to rapidly expanding markets.  (>> more information)



Contract signed for TriMARES hybrid AUV/ROV

INESC Porto has signed a new contract with a brazilian consortium for the delivery of a custom hybrid AUV/ROV. The new vehicle will be developed by the Ocean Systems Group, with the delivery scheduled for March 2011.



OceanSys moves to new facilities

The new lab is located in the Robotics area of the Electrical Engineering Department at FEUP, with direct access to a water tank with approximately 5x5x1.8m.



MARES AUV controllers redesigned and validated

The onboard controllers of the MARES AUV have been redesigned, to improve performance both in the horizontal plane (horizontal velocity and orientation) and in the horizontal plane (vertical velocity and pitch angle). These controllers have been developed using a new hydrodynamic model of the vehicle and have been validated in the Douro river, in the north of Portugal. This work has resulted in two papers presented at the Oceans'09 conference in Biloxi, MS, USA: one relative to modeling (.pdf file) and the other to control (.pdf file).



Sidescan Sonar installed on Zarco ASV for feature-based navigation

A "Sportscan" Sidescan Sonar, from Imagenex, has been installed on Zarco ASV and used to extract features of the bottom. The system was demonstrated in the Douro river, north of Portugal. This work has resulted in two papers presented at the Oceans'09 conference in Biloxi, MS, USA: one relative to sonar image segmentation and feature extraction (.pdf file) and the other to feature-based navigation (.pdf file).



OceanSys moves to INESC Porto

The researchers of the Ocean Systems Group are now members of INESC Porto - Institute for Systems and Computer Engineering of Porto, a private non-profit research institution working as an interface between the academic world and the worlds of industry, services and Public Administration in the areas of Information Technologies, Telecommunications and Electronics (ITT&E).



Gama ASV fully assembled

The second Autonomous Surface Vehicle joins the fleet of autonomous vehicles of the Ocean Systems Group.




The MARES AUV featured in a national TV news program. (>> 2 min video, 3MB, in portuguese)



WWECO Project started

The WWECO project  is a 30-month collaboration between the Ocean Systems Group and the company Águas do Oeste. The major goal of this project is the development of methods to assess the environmental impact of sewage outfalls, taking advantage of recent developments in bio-optical instrumentation and sampling strategies for AUVs. (>> more information)



ECO-Triplet installed on MARES AUV

A new optical sensor has been installed on the MARES AUV, measuring Chlorophyll-a, CDOM and 660nm red backscatter. It was ordered from WET Labs in the "puck" format, and installed in a custom-built wet section.



MARES AUV automatically detected the thermocline

The MARES AUV was programmed to use CTD measurements to detect the thermocline and identify the major parameters: surface temperature, maximum gradient, bottom temperature and corresponding depth values. This was tested in the Douro river using a Fastcat CTD, from Sea Bird Electronics, Inc..



INCORP Project concluded

Conclusion of the INCORP Project.



MARES AUV navigates in a moving acoustic network

A new navigation algorithm allows MARES to navigate using traditional LBL and at the same time, using extra acoustic signals to identify parameters of the moving baseline. It was demonstrated in the Douro river. A paper has been presented at the Oceans'08 conference in Quebec, Canada. (.pdf file)



SIMPES Project concluded

Conclusion of the SIMPES Project.



Zarco ASV tested as a virtual mooring

The Zarco ASV has been demonstrated with the ability to act as a virtual mooring. The vessel estimates the intensity and direction of the current in order to maintain a constant position. This is an important feature to allow the ASVs to transport acoustic beacons for AUV operations.



MARES AUV demonstrated at sea

The MARES AUV was demonstrated off the Portuguese coast, collecting CTD data to map the plume emanating from a sewage outfall near Foz do Arelho. The vehicle was launched from a small support vessel, covered over 2km in about 40 minutes, and ended the mission at the specified location. (>> more information)



MARES AUV christened

The new AUV has been christened "MARES", an acronym for Modular Autonomous Robot for Environment Sampling. This name emphasises some of the main features of the vehicle, such as the modular design and the capability to be used for environment monitoring.  (>> more information about the MARES AUV)



New AUV demonstrated in fresh water

A demonstration mission was planned for the Douro river to simulate the sea mission scheduled for next month. In this mission, the AUV was programmed to collect CTD data in a 300x50m rectangular area, in various layers. Although all subsystems have been previously tested separately, it was the first time the complete system was demonstrated. (>> more information)



Synthetic Aperture Sonar installed on Zarco ASV

A prototype of a Synthetic Aperture Sonar has been demonstrated aboard Zarco in the reservoir of the Crestuma dam, in the Douro river. This SAS is being developed under the INCORP Project by a research team at FEUP/CIIMAR. Its purpose is to obtain high resolution echo reflectivity maps through synthetic aperture techniques, taking advantage of the high precision navigation system of the ASV.



Acoustic navigation modules tested in fresh water

A set of acoustic receivers and transmitters, designed and built by the Ocean Systems Group, passed preliminary tests in the Douro river. These tests included the assessment of the detection levels for the acoustic signals and the precision of ranges measured between two known locations. These modules will be installed in the AUV and in the navigation buoys, so that the AUV can navigate using triangulation.



SIMPES project started

The SIMPES project (Integrated System for Routine and Emergency Monitoring of Sewage Outfall Plumes) is a 2-year collaboration between the Ocean Systems Group and the company Águas de Portugal. The major goal of this project is the development of a prototype of an integrated system combining the most recent innovations in underwater robotics and data modeling and processing, to provide an advanced instrument for environment monitoring and protection. (>> more information)



Zarco ASV completes autonomous mission

The Zarco ASV has completed a autonomous mission in the Douro river. The vehicle followed a preprogrammed trajectory, based on differential GPS, while logging all relevant data to the onboard solid-state disk and transmitting data to shore in real time.



AUV depth controllers tuned

The AUV depth controllers were tuned to allow independent depth and pitch control. The main objective for this test was to fine-tune the closed loop depth controllers. These controllers are continuously using data from the pressure sensor and pitch sensor, to produce commands to the vertical thrusters. (>> short video, 1MB)



First AUV dive

The new AUV was tested successfully in a 25 m pool at FADEUP. The main objectives for this test were to adjust buoyancy and use the vertical thrusters to dive.



AUV hull tested in water

The hull of the new AUV was tested successfully in a water tank at FEUP. The main objectives for this test were to trim the vehicle for the first time and to run all thrusters in the water. The AUV has been preliminarily code-named "OS8", for OceanSys, 8-inch diameter.



First AUV parts delivered

Two weeks after receiving the order, a local machine shop delivered the first mechanical parts of the new Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) being designed at the Ocean Systems Group. Most of the AUV hull will be machined in acetal copolymer, with a few parts in stainless steel. At his stage, almost all AUV components have been designed or specified, such as batteries, onboard computer, motors and the mechanical structure. The plan is to have the AUV hull tested in the water during the summer.



SIMES protocol established

This protocol was established between the Ocean Systems Group and the company Águas do Oeste with the goal of customizing an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) for environmental monitoring campaigns. This includes sensor integration specific software development. (>> more information)



Zarco and Gama ASVs christened

The participants in the INCORP Project have chosen the names Zarco and Gama for the two Autonomous Surface Vehicles being constructed. These names were picked up from a short-list of Portuguese explorers: Zarco from João Gonçalves Zarco, discoverer of the Madeira Islands, and Gama from Vasco da Gama.



ASV tested successfully in the Douro river

The Autonomous Surface Vehicle was tested with success in a real operational scenario. The vehicle was deployed from a small harbor in the Douro river, in the reservoir of the Crestuma dam. The main objectives of this mission were to assess wi-fi communications in long range (over 1km), verify the accuracy and reliability of GPS positioning and identify the velocity model for the vehicle. The logistic aspects were also tested. Zarco was remotelly controlled and transmited data to the shore station throughout the whole mission.



ASV tested successfully in a test tank

The first Autonomous Surface Vehicle was tested in a large test tank at FEUP. It was the first time the vehicle went into the water and the main objtectives were to confirm the water line, adjust trim, verify the reliability of wi-fi communications and test actuation capability (motors, motor controllers and software interface). The vehicle was remotely controlled by a joystick and a laptop interface.



INCORP project started

INCORP (Improved Navigation with Cooperative Robotic Platforms) is a 3-year project, funded by Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (portuguese Science and Technology Foundation). The main objective is the development and implemention of an infrastructure to improve navigation capabilities of AUVs operating in shallow waters, following the concept of a moving acoustic network. (>> more information

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