Semi-Autonomous Underwater Vehicle for Intervention Missions (SAUVIM)

sauvim_in_water.jpgThe University of Hawaii (via Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends) is testing an undersea robotic vehicle called SAUVIM (Semi-Autonomous Underwater Vehicle for Intervention Missions)."Intervention missions" include "construction & repair, cable streaming, mine hunting, and munitions retrieval..."This sucker is roughly the size of an SUV, with a robotic arm. It can operate at great depths -- down to about 4 miles -- for about eight hours. Operating time is a function of battery life.The Honolulu Star-Bulletin reported some problems, but the engineers and Navy didn't get down on themselves:

A sensor failed to work, causing a glitch in the performance of the group's Semi-Autonomous Underwater Vehicle for Intervention during a demonstration ....But industry and Navy research officials were enthusiastic about the unique vehicle's potential."This is technology that the world needs," said Gary Godshalk, of Lockheed Martin, in Kailua. "Underwater vehicles are the future."
I am off to Hawaii, myself, for a friend's wedding in a couple of days. If I scuba, I'll keep an eye out for an any underwater SUVs with robotic arms.So, here's a big "aloha" to the DefenseTech gang. It's been a blast.And, since "aloha" is also a greeting, welcome Jim Lewis (no relation), Director of the Technology and Public Policy Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. I used to work for Jim. He grasps both the technology and the absurd, which makes him perfect for this gig.You'll like him a lot.-- posted by Jeffrey Lewis
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