NIWA scientists are pioneering the use of underwater remote operated vehicle (ROV) technology to improve surveillance checks and are working with the New Zealand tech company Boxfish to customise its equipment for the job.
After a massive start to the New Year in Antarctica, Boxfish Research, New Zealand’s leading underwater robotics startup announced, they have just returned from another overseas adventure. Trainer and experienced diver Russell Hughes arrived back in New Zealand from Japan, where he spent a week in ROV training with Japanese distributor, Cosmos Shoji.
We were invited by New Zealand's largest seafood company, Sanford, to help showcase the world under the surface of our oceans at the Ports of Auckland Seeport Festival 2019.
“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.