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Enhanced Riverine Drifter

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N00014-10-M-0331
Agency Tracking Number: N10A-024-0629
Amount: $70,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: N10A-T024
Solicitation Number: 2010.A
Solicitation Year: 2010
Award Year: 2010
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2010-06-28
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2011-04-30
Small Business Information
4129 Avenida de la Plata
Oceanside, CA 92056
United States
DUNS: 046386962
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Jochen Klinke
 Senior Scientist
 (760) 754-2400
Business Contact
 Ronald George
Title: CEO
Phone: (760) 754-2400
Research Institution
 Massachusetts Inst. of Technology
 Henrik Schmidt
77 Massachusetts Avenue Building E19-750
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307
United States

 (617) 253-5727
 Nonprofit College or University

Existing riverine drifters are passive devices designed to capture, store and transmit river flow and bathymetry information. Problems inherent with passively drifting devices include the inability to maintain uniform cross-stream spatial coverage and lost drifters due to unintentional grounding and entanglement with various hazards present in a typical river environment. This proposal outlines a path to explore hardware and software solutions to improve overall system performance associated with the deployment of a small swarm of “intelligent” drifters. Modifications including propulsion, steering, river boundary detection and swarm navigation are presented and discussed. By leveraging this team’s extensive experience with the design, fabrication and operation of remotely operated and autonomous marine vehicles, a systematic approach to evaluating all available commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware and software solutions is presented. Improved deployment efficiency will be gained through better spatial coverage due to an ability to rely on inter-nodal range detection and cluster navigation achieved through complex swarm behaviors as previously employed by this team on other autonomous marine platforms.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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