Deepsea seabed exploration

ARL's foray into deepwater exploration is as part of the Keppel-NUS corporate laboratory program to carry out exploration works for polymetallic nodules at water depths of between 4000 m to 5000 m. The goal is to use commercial off-the-shelf underwater vehicles and to fuse data from cameras, side-scan sonars, multibeam sonars, sub-bottom profilers with an aim to rapidly survey a mineral deposit and estimate its volume using adaptive statistical sampling strategies. To achieve this goal, we are developing a statistical data analysis engine along with other signal processing modules. This would potentially enable generation of large-scale optical mosaics and benthic bathymetry maps, detailed seabed texture analysis, seabed classification to effectively detect minerals and assessment of buried layer of mineral nodules.