Mike Orange – CEO
Phone: 09-600 1910
Email: [email protected]
For Immediate Release
20 December 2018
Gigantic Step for Kiwi Robotics Startup; Headed to Antarctica
· Boxfish Research is Headed on a research expedition to Antarctica.
· The Boxfish ROV will capture footage at depths and angles unreachable by man.
· The Boxfish 360 spherical camera will capture immersive video of the Antarctic ocean.
AUCKLAND. – December 20, 2018 – Ahead of the new year, Boxfish Research, New Zealand’s leading underwater robotics startup have announced that on the 2ndof January 2019, Cofounder and experienced mechanical engineer Ben King, will begin his journey to Antarctica. Accompanying Dr Regina Eisert and a research team from the University of Canterbury, the team will be participating in Antarctic Top Predator New Zealand programme. With the goal of studying and capturing footage of specifically the Orca and the Minke whales as they congregate through the ice chamber that resupplies McMurdo research station. King will be equipped with both the Boxfish ROV and the Boxfish 360 underwater vision systems, which have been designed to handle the harshest conditions in the world.
“At Boxfish Research we develop high-end video solutions for underwater, and have been asked to join a scientific expedition to try and understand the better behaviour of these animals… our equipment is designed to be used by people in real situations and there's no better way to test that than in the coldest, driest and windiest place on earth."
Through the use of the Boxfish ROV, the research team will have the ability to capture uncompressed HD video that is live streamed back a base on a 17" monitor. This advanced system allows the team to capture footage from depths and angles divers simply can’t reach underneath the ice. As well as the ROV the Boxfish 360 spherical camera will also be dangled off the edge of the ice, capturing immersive video content on behalf of many that will never have the opportunity to visit Antarctica.
“We hope to capture 360 immersive videos with the 360 camera which will be dangled off the ice with a rope. Then we will be using the unique super high definition ultra-stable Boxfish ROV to capture whales from underneath and from unique angles going down some several hundred meters”
As a growing New Zealand Startup Boxfish are thrilled to have the opportunity to participate in and facilitate this massive research expedition. Through this opportunity, the Kiwi startup is able to expand their audience and prove their equipment has got what it takes.
Boxfish Research is a New Zealand underwater robotics company with a mission to reveal underwater environments with unprecedented clarity. Since Boxfish’s founding in 2016, after a chance meeting of three engineers, the team of seven now lead New Zealand in underwater robotics. Boxfish’s product line includes two underwater vision systems; the Boxfish ROV and the Boxfish 360. These cameras were designed and created with the goal to provide users with a seamless, semi-autonomous and reliable experience. Boxfish are dedicated to making the best underwater vision systems in the world, with a goal to set a standard across the industry. Please visit https://www.boxfish.nz/to learn more.
“Going off coms” is the the last thing Tom says before climbing out of the back seat of the hovering helicopter, onto the sea ice with a 1m long ice drill. A minute later, after drilling a couple of holes, a thumbs up signals that he is satisfied that the ice is at least 75cm thick, strong enough to support the weight of the 1300kg helicopter & its contents. The pilot powers the machine down and we begin unloading ourselves, the Boxfish ROV, the Boxfish 360, hydrophones, camera gear, survival bags and of course snacks! It is around 10pm and this will be our base for the nights activities on the ice.
Founder Ben describes his trip down to the ice and early days learning how to survive in this beautiful but hostile environment.
Boxfish Research customer Tom Boyd of Sedogs Productions while freediving and shooting 360 had an amazing encounter with a whale shark off of the Big island of Hawai'i.
One of our founders Ben King is embarking on an Antarctic expedition in Jan-Feb 2019 as part of an ongoing research programme set up and led by Principal Investigator Dr Regina Eisert from the University of Canterbury. This research programme is called the Antarctic Top Predator NZ programme. Boxfish are offering free use of one of our 360 cameras, ROV’s and Ben as a senior engineer to operate it. Logistics provided by Antarctica New Zealand.
We had the pleasure of performing a demonstration for the Musee Sous-Marin or Underwater Museum in the picturesque town of Lorient in Brittany. This museum was founded by Christophe Cerino, a passionate Naval Historian and Archeologist.
The Marine Equipment Trade Show or "METS" is a business to business trade show held annually at the Amsterdam RAI Exhibition Centre with exhibitors and businesses from around the world.
This year we took the Boxfish ROV along to exhibit at the show and entertained a steady stream of visitors to our stand.
New Zealand Geographic photographer Richard Robinson relies on the Boxfish 360 underwater spherical camera to bring back stunning 360 video from the remote Snares Islands.
Sue Reidy interviewed the Boxfish Research team for the Biodiversity feature on New Zealand's premier green news site.