First of all, we wanted to remind everyone that the BlueRobotics T100 Thruster Kickstarter is live starting at 8:30am Pacific time today! The T100 is the first underwater thruster that is affordable for hobbyist projects. We've put tons of work into it and we hope that you will consider backing us! There are many ways it can be used on drone/APM/Pixhawk projects. Check out the ArduBoat User Group for ideas.
You can back the Kickstarter here.
Speaking of APM-based marine robotics projects, we've made some significant progress on our SolarSurfer vehicle. The SolarSurfer is a T100 propelled autonomous robot that is powered by a solar panel and navigated by an APM2.6. We are working towards a non-stop trip from Los Angeles to Hawaii.
Last week we completed a 24 hour test in the open ocean. The SolarSurfer was launched from a boat off the coast of Los Angeles and autonomously navigated under solar power until the sun went down. At night, the robot drifts with the current. The electronics and satellite link stay active so that we can track it's movement.
The following morning it "woke-up" and continued on its way. We intercepted it with the boat in the middle of the day. Successful test.
Here's an image from the test. We'll have a map of the GPS track posted on our website in the next few days.
Thanks and remember to check out the Kickstarter campaign!
- Rusty, Joe, and Josh from BlueRobotics