Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV)

Untethered underwater robot that does not require a real-time commands to operate. AUV’s are designed to carry out a variety of mission including deep sea sonar surveys, oceanographic sampling, and mine detection.


The Seabed AUV was originally designed by Hanumant Singh at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (WHOI) to be a cost effective low speed survey platform preforming optical and acoustic surveys below diver depths(>50m). Seabed’s two hull structure creates a stable platform for underwater surveys reducing the affects of pitch and roll . The vehicle is designed to hover over rugged sea floor at a constant altitude. The size and relative ease of launch and recovery allow the uses of small coastal vessels or fishing vessels of opportunity decreasing the costs of operations. The PIFSC’s CRED and Northwest Fisheries Science Center’s (NWFSC) , Fishery Resource Analysis and Monitoring Division(FRAM) are collaborating with WHOI to develop and operate the SeaBED autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) to collect fisheries-independent data and habitat mapping to depths less than 2000m. The AUV was received in early 2009 and since then has conducted a verity of mission from shallow water coral habitat investigation, optical mapping of known underwater archaeological sites, to newly discovered deep sea sponge reefs. Successful collaborative mission have been run on Galvez Bank South of Guam and around the Chanel Islands National Marine Sanctuary, Santa Barbara, CA.

Cruise Reports


Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Underway Video

Visio-SeaBed Camera Angles

Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV)


Hanu Singh
AUV Lucille

Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV)

Physical characteristics:

Length 6.5 ft
Width 4 ft
Height 5 ft
Weight in air 500-600lbs
Top Speed 0.3 m/s
Max depth 2000m
Duration 6 hours

Sensor Suite:



Tracking hardware:

Internal operating system:

Block diagram of AUV systems.

SeaBed block diagram