Subsea ROVs have been at the centre of one of the largest growing industries with their ability to stay underwater for hours at a time and remove humans from most dangerous underwater and tank environments.
Found on a majority of all subsea ROVs is a camera system of some type. Subsea ROVs are usually equipped with an RGB camera complimented by a powerful lighting system. This allows for remote underwater inspections, search and rescue missions, and the ability to have an extra set of eyes when paired with divers. These camera systems can also be used with AI to detect objects under water and measure the size of schools of fish etc.
Paired with a camera system is a grabber arm, this takes a subsea ROV from just being a set of eyes and turns it into an extra set of hands. Having a grabber arm equipped on a subsea ROV means it can now complete simple tasks without the need for a person to be underwater. Anything from locating and finding ropes to bring to the surface to finding contraband that was dropped into the water.
Another feature many subsea ROVs are equipped with is an array of sensors. These are usually secondary payloads that work in the background and are there to ensure everything is working correctly. External sensors can also be used such as gas detectors.
Subsea ROVs in tanks
While subsea ROVs are usually thought of only working in water, they are also commonly used in tank inspections. Tanks that are filled with a liquid and would mean losing income to inspect them manually is the perfect place for a subsea ROV to be used, providing the liquid in the tank won't damage it.
Image: Deep Trekker