Robot boats monitor water quality in Saxony’s lakes

A motorboat on the water. Photo: TU Bergakademie Freiberg

Bergakademie Freiberg puts AI behind the wheel

Freiberg, January 16, 2022. In the future, small robot boats will patrol lakes and ponds to detect environmental damage, but also to explore interesting corners for naturalists. Researchers at Bergakademie Freiberg are currently undertaking construction as part of the project.Autoboat Assist“It’s such a robotic boat and we want to give it artificial intelligence (AI) that takes the wheel. This stems from a letter from the University of Freiberg.

Lidar, sonar and cameras on board

The small boat will be equipped with several sensors that already control semi-automatic cars and submarines: optical cameras, laser localization via lidar and sound localization via sonar. Together, artificial intelligence and sensors should be able to navigate the miniature robot boat autonomously through uncharted waters and avoid obstacles on their own. The use of such floating robots is mainly intended for water where there is no clear view of the remote control mode. Computer science professor Bernhard Jung of TU Bergakademie Freiberg explained: “In many cases, this excludes use in particularly ecologically pleasant beach areas, which are often invisible and where, for example, deciduous trees or shallow water pose unexpected collision hazards. “.

316 thousand euros from the European Union

The project is financed by the European Union with €316,000 from the European Social Fund (ESF). Students from the Freiberg Chairs participate in the areas of “Artificial Intelligence and Databases”, “Virtual Reality and Multimedia”, “Software Technology and Robotics” and “Applied Discrete Mathematics”. The robot console should be ready by the end of 2022.

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Source: Bergakademie Freiberg

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Frank Mccarthy

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