To sail the seven seas, isn’t that the dream of many a pirate, privateer and seaman? Well, how times have progressed, where you can opt to explore the world above sea level on a vessel, or to do it the underwater way with a submarine. James Gosling’s fascination with the oceans has led him to work on a fleet of robots which are able to move out in the ocean in order for them to measure everything – ranging from weather to oil slicks, in order to sharply reduce many of the costs of ocean-related businesses.
To help him do this, a company that he joined, Liquid Robotics, has come up with a Wave Glider that is roughly the size of a surfboard. Relying on a wave-based propulsion system as well as a couple of solar panels that will fuel its computers, these robots are able to travel slowly across the ocean to perform its data recording feats. All sensor data will be crunched onboard by low-power cellphone chips, where it will then be shipped by satellite or cellphone to big onshore computers which will further perform complex analysis.
Imagine networking a fleet of robots across the entire network of earth’s oceans – that is no mean feat, and we do wish Mr Gosling the very best in his endeavors.
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