Performance Impacts on Unmanned Vehicle and Sensor Capabilities for Standoff Mine Detection in the Very Shallow Water, Surf Zone, and Beach Zone
Kragelund, Sean P.
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The Very Shallow Water, Surf Zone, and Beach Zone (VSW/SZ/BZ) environments present extreme challenges for the safe standoff detection of objects, such as mines, explosive ordnance, or natural obstacles such as rocks and shoals. Wave action adversely impacts the performance of conventional unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) and remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) that employ sonar or optical imaging sensors. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or bottom crawling vehicles that use different sensing modalities may be more effective in these environments. Research is needed to quantify the limitations of current standoff detection sensors deployed from mine countermeasures (MCM) vehicles and recommend promising alternatives for future technology development. This study has two main research objectives. First, we will work with project sponsors and subject matter experts to identify and compare the current state of various technologies for standoff detection of explosive ordnance in the VSW/SZ/BZ. Second, we will leverage NPS experimental capabilities to assess the performance impacts on different MCM vehicles and sensors subjected to wave disturbances in VSW/SZ environments. Specifically, we will conduct semi-captive tests of different MCM vehicle types in a tow tank with wave making capability to simulate VSW/SZ conditions. The measured wave-induced motion profiles will be used to analyze the effects of platform motion on the detection performance of conventional imaging sensors using standard object detection algorithms. Understanding the capabilities of existing technologies, and how they can be expected to perform in these challenging domains, will help inform programs of record and guide future technology investment by the US Navy and US Marine Corps. Research Project ID NPS-21-J212 combines two Topic/Research Projects: NPS-21-M212 and elements of NPS-21-N271.
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RightsThis publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.
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