As we continue to fill the earth with billions of people, it’s important that we monitor the environment and in particular the oceans. Doing so is quite a difficult and expensive task though, due to the size of the oceans and the amount of resources it takes to setup a monitoring buoy or other such systems floating on the waves.
As usual, a cheap solution to ocean monitoring has been developed with the aid of technology. Liquid Robotics have developed a completely autonomous robot known as Wave Glider to carry out such tasks.
The unmanned maritime vehicle draws all the power it needs from the sun and sea. Its upper section floats on the surface of the water and looks like a surfboard covered in solar panels. 22 feet below the surface is a separate section of the robot attached by a cable to the board above and consisting of several wings. They bob up and down in the relatively still water as the board above moves with the waves, and in so doing generates energy.
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