IIT Madras team builds solar-powered survey craft for ports, waterways

IIT Madras team builds solar-powered survey craft for ports, waterways
Team Careers360 | Nov 23, 2020 - 1:15 p.m. IST
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NEW DELHI: Researchers from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras have developed a solar-powered unmanned autonomous survey craft for Indian ports and inland waterways.

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This system has been developed at the National Technology Centre for Ports, Waterways and Coasts (NTCPWC) at IIT Madras and it is also capable of delivering precise depth measurements, even in shallow waters, said a statement issued by IIT Madras.

“It will provide real-time data transmission over long distances and also undertake autonomous hydrographic and oceanographic surveys,” says the statement.

This system could be outfitted with an echo sounder, GPS System, and broadband communication technology and it is capable of delivering precise depth measurements.

Recently, the craft was tested at the Chennai coast at Kamarajar Port and passed.

The researchers are already in the process of commercialising this technology with the help of the Ministry of Shipping, Government of India, and IIT Madras Incubation Cell.

Highlighting the major impact of developing this autonomous survey craft, K. Murali, professor in charge of NTCPWC, IIT Madras, said: “This is a significant leap towards indigenisation of the Indian Maritime Sector, which is currently dominated by foreign technology. The craft is capable of delivering precise and accurate depth measurements even in very shallow waters. This Autonomous Survey Craft will help to meet the increasing demands for volume and efficiency as ships are becoming larger, with maximum loading to ensure the most efficient operations.”

It is scheduled for further field trials under harsher environments at Syama Prasad Mookerjee (SMP) Port, Kolkata, in November 2020 itself.

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