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Marine

Dolphins were the inspiration for a new type of sonar called twin inverted pulse sonar (TW...

By measuring the differences between emitted sound pulses and their echoes sonar is able to detect and identify targets such as reefs, wrecks, submarines and fish shoals. However, standard sonar has limitations in shallow water because bubble clouds, which result from breaking waves or other causes, can scatter sound and clutter the sonar image. Inspired by the exceptional sonar capabilities of dolphins, scientists have now developed a new underwater device that can outperform standard sonar and detect objects through bubble clouds.  Read More

Tethys floating at the sea surface in Monterey Bay (Image: Todd Walsh copyright 2010 MBARI...

When it comes to exploring the murky depths of the oceans, autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) have become increasingly important over the past decade. These vehicles generally fall into one of two groups: propeller-driven vehicles such as Snookie that can travel fast and carry lots of instruments, but are limited to expeditions of just a few days, and “gliders,” which can stay at sea for weeks or even months at a time, but are slow. Engineers have combined the best of these two approaches to create a new long-range AUV (LRAUV) that can travel rapidly for hundreds of kilometers, “hover” in the water for weeks at a time, and carry a wide variety of instruments.  Read More

Steven Roberts' Microship micro-trimaran

Are you “mediagenic, geeky, youthful, and insanely adventurous”? Those are the qualities that Steven Roberts is seeking in the new owner of his custom pedal/wind/solar-powered micro-trimaran, the Microship. A self-described “technomad,” Roberts is a huge fan of high technology and self-propelled solo adventuring, and the quirky little boat is clearly the lovechild of those two passions. It has a host of high-tech features, yet is intended for escaping the rat race and living simply. Ironic? Maybe, but it comes with a great story.  Read More

The C-Explorer 2

Using the same technology proven in its existing C-Quester models, which can dive to depths of up to 100m (328 feet), Dutch luxury submarine manufacturer U-Boat Worx has announced a new line of exploration submersibles certified for diving to depths from 100 to 1,000m (328 to 3,280-feet). Named C-Explorers, the new line of diving machines are available in configurations for one to six passengers and are being marketed to scientists, research organizations, luxury superyacht owners, aquatic tourism ventures and private explorers.  Read More

The marine rescue UAV prototype

People often need to be rescued at sea because of stormy weather – exactly the kind of conditions in which it is not safe to fly. Nonetheless, fully-crewed helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft are regularly sent out into such weather to perform maritime rescues, endangering both the crew and the expensive aircraft themselves. Soon, however, a new type of unmanned remote-control aircraft may be able to do the job. Not only would flight crews be kept out of harm’s way, but as demonstrated by a functioning prototype, the aircraft would outperform conventional planes in rough weather, thanks to shape-shifting technology.  Read More

Barnacles are a major cause of fouling of ship hulls (Image: NOAA)

Fouling of hulls is a major problem for world shipping – for private leisure craft as well as large cargo ships – with barnacles being a major culprit. It reduces the performance of vessels and increases their fuel requirements. Medetomidine has proved effective in preventing fouling of ship bottoms and now researchers attempting to develop new, environmentally friendly methods to limit marine fouling have identified the gene that causes barnacles to react to the substance, opening up the possibility of an antifouling paint that is gentle to both barnacles and the environment.  Read More

Atlantis Resources Corporation has just unveiled its recently completed AK1000 tidal turbi...

The oil and gas fields of the North Sea have been meeting the power needs of the UK population for a number of years but such things have a finite lifespan and there are different ways to get power from the sea. The world's largest and most powerful tidal power turbine has just been unveiled by Atlantis Resources Corporation ahead of installation at a special berth at the European Marine Energy Center (EMEC) in Orkney, Scotland. The AK1000 will shortly be secured to the seabed off the choppy waters of Orkney and connected to the grid at EMEC. The company claims that the turbine is capable of generating enough electricity for 1,000 homes and is the first of a series of turbines to be deployed.  Read More

The Personal Submarine provides great underwater adventuring for two

If an octopus’s garden in the shade is where you like to be then this two-person submarine could be just the ticket. Capable of descending to a depth of 1,000 feet the Personal Submarine gives you and a friend a chance to check out coral reefs, shipwrecks and whatever other attractions can be found on the sea floor. Although, with its rather steep asking price you’ll either really want to be beneath the sea, or have a really large chuck of spare change laying around.  Read More

Brownie's VS335 Third Lung diving system automatically adjusts its compression speed accor...

We’ve got cars, motorcycles and bicycles that are electric, so why not hookah air pumps for diving? They make much less noise than their gas and diesel-powered counterparts, they don’t stink up their surroundings with toxic fumes, and they don’t emit carbon. Of course, as is the case with many other e-things, the electricity that powers them has to come from somewhere, and chances are that somewhere isn’t a wind turbine or a solar panel. A new diving system from Brownie’s Marine Group, however, has another ace up its sleeve - a variable-speed compressor that automatically adjusts in accordance to the diver’s demand for air, thus saving power and allowing for longer and/or deeper dives when running off a battery.  Read More

The GUSS autonomous vehicles developed by Virginia Tech are to make their debut at the 201...

Having placed third in the prestigious DARPA Urban Challenge in 2007, engineering students from Virginia Tech have returned to the forefront of autonomous vehicle development by designing and building four GUSS (Ground Unmanned Support Surrogate) vehicles. Able to carry 1800 lbs and designed to resupply and evacuate troops in the field as well as reduce the load carried by them, the vehicles are due to make their debut at the impending 2010 Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC)war games in Hawaii.  Read More

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