Undersea optical stationkeeping: Improved methods

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Scopus citations


Submersibles require the capability to accurately maintain their position when they are observing, photographing, or working at a site. The most direct way for an ROV or AUV to maintain position in the near bottom environment is to track or lock onto stationary objects on the ocean floor. A particular advantage of an optical stationkeeping system is its ability to use natural rather than manmade beacons. Several improvements to our previously reported optical flow methods for the detection of vehicle motion have been investigated. Experimental results indicate that an adaptation of Newton-Raphson search combined with the use of a low-noise, high accuracy camera can drastically reduce the number of image points at which computations need be made. Other experiments with an algorithm, which accounts for illumination variations that one may encounter in undersea environments, show significant improvement in the estimation of optical flow and vehicle motion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)319-338
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Robotic Systems
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1991
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering

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