Saab's Seaeye Falcon DR remotely operated vehicle (ROV) is used in a wide variety of applications, including oil & gas exploration, scientific exploration and data-gathering, and environmental monitoring. Its depth rating is 1,000 m (3,280 ft), and its maximum tether length is 1,100 m (3,608.9 ft) with a 14 mm (0.55 inch) diameter umbilical, although longer options can be achieved with custom umbilicals. It runs on a single-phase, universal auto-sensing, self-selecting input of 100-270V AC at 2.8 kW. The polypropylene chassis, measuring 635 mm x 600 mm x 1,055 mm (25 inch x 23.6 inch x 41.5 inch) is robust and lightweight for buoyancy and lack of corrosion. The robot's launch weight is 100 kg (220.5 lb), payload is up to 15 kg (33 lb), and top speed is more than 3 knots. 6,400 lumens of LED lights with variable density can be tilted to vary intensity, linked to the video camera's 180-degree tilting mechanism. Data and video are transmitted via F2 fiber optics. Powered by five magnetically coupled thruster units with a combined forward thrust of 50 kgf, the Seaeye Falcon DR has a 1:1 power to weight ratio. Standard sensors include auto depth and heading, pitch and roll, and compass. (Source: Saab)
William, I wasn't sure where your (usually) straightforward statements ended and tongue-in-cheek started, either. Re Google, I know what you mean: it's getting harder and harder to find good basic info instead of commercial/sales info. But that result was predicted when the Internet became commercialized.
Ann, it was not completely clear when things turned, so you did a good one on me. About Google; I have had quite a bit of serious frustration when attempting to find information about some product or system and the dumb google search instead turns up a hundred sites that want to sell me one, even if they don't have it and have no concept of what it is. At that point it becomes a first rate time waster.
But on the other topic, while invisibility in the normal sense is a big challenge, being un-noticed is a lot simpler, hence the comment about the missile launching dolphin and such. Consider how easy it would be for you to pass somebody by if a whole crowd were wearing AnnThryft masks. Spotting the real one is a challenge if they all look similar.
Ann, OK, that makes sense. Of course a missile launching fish would be a very interesting creature. Probably we could train a school of dolphin to escort a missile launching robot dolphin, giving it a nearly perfect cover. The main hazard would be poachers. Perhaps DARPA would be interested in that concept, which just popped into my head. I am not at all familiar with the DARPA dolphin program and have never heard of "Freddy the Fish".
It won't be too much longer and hardware design, as we used to know it, will be remembered alongside the slide rule and the Karnaugh map. You will need to move beyond those familiar bits and bytes into the new world of software centric design.
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