Within the Espadon DGA Project, ECA Robotics developed an AUV (Autonomous Underwater Vehicle) recovery system (LARS – Launch and Recovery System) done by an USV (Unmanned Surface Vehicle). We developed some sonar data processing algorithms allowing the AUV to detect and follow a cable in order to clamp itself on it and start the recovery phase.
The used sensor is a Blueview P-900 sonar.
The implemented data processing consists in:
- Potential target extraction
- Particle filtering tracking to identify and follow the seeked target (the cable) knowing the AUV navigation data and the a priori speed of the cable
The algorithms were tested during trials on real operating environment and proved there robustness to disturbances, even when, during a trial, a dolphin got between the AUV and the cable.