Automated robot behavior for underwater hull inspections

Introduction to Fleet Cleaner

Fleet  Cleaner  develops  and deploys robots for ship hull cleanings and hull inspections. We are an innovative technical company based in Delft. With our unique inspection robot we offer underwater inspections of the hull, available in all Dutch seaports. The Fleet Inspector robot takes underwater pictures of a hull, giving a complete overview of the fouling. From this overview, the robot is able to automatically calculate the added resistance and fuel costs due to fouling. By performing inspections with a robot there is no need for a diver to be in the water. This makes the operation save and efficient and allows for inspections to be performed 24/7 at all drafts.

Research objectives

The Fleet Inspector robot is usually deployed from a small boat, as can be seen in the figure above. It can be operated by a single operator. Currently this operator has to actively drive the Fleet Inspector. The procedure of inspecting a ship is always the same, and there are a very limited amount of external factors involved. This makes that the robot behavior can be automated. Automated robot behavior will result in more consisted inspections, and a lower operator workload. In order to work towards an automated inspection robot we are looking for interns who are interested in one or more of the following topics:

  • Determining the motion of the robot relative to the ship with sensors or vision
  • Determining the optimal control architecture
  • Implementing and testing this control scheme

We are looking for a talented and enthusiastic MSc student, preferably with a background in mechanical engineering, control engineering, robotics or related engineering fields. We offer the following:

  • 3-12 months thesis assignment or internship at Fleet Cleaner (in Delft)
  • Actual implementation and testing of your work in a real-world application
  • Working in an innovative company
  • Working together in a young, enthusiastic and multidisciplinary team
  • An appropriate internship allowance