Unmanned Surface Vehicle for Coastal and Protected Waters Applications: the Charlie Project
The paper deals with the design, development, test and exploitation of an unmanned surface vehicle (USV) for coastal and protected waters applications, such as sampling of the sea surface microlayer and harbor survey. The unmanned catamaran Charlie, which is fully autonomous from the point of view of both power supply and computing capabilities and is supervised by a portable human operator station, is characterized by a state-of-the-art hardware, software and control architecture. A PC-compatible computing platform and a GNU/Linux-based embedded real-time system support an intelligent control architecture, while advanced modeling and identification techniques, based on on-board sensors, allow the implementation of accurate navigation, guidance and control model-based algorithms. Results of experiments carried out on motion estimation and maneuvering control in the Genoa-Prà harbor are presented and discussed as well as the vessel exploitation in scientific applications and research projects.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 01 June 2007
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