15 Who’s Minding the Planet? SURFACE WATER What's unique about both this partnership and resulting vehicle, HYCAT? Kevin: When we set on this venture with SeaRobotics, the goal was to make the best-in-class ASV using the best sensors possible. No compromises.There’s no other surface vehicle on the market with a comparable sensor payload, cost point, and performance. HYCAT integrates sensors from all the best sensor manufacturers to provide the highest quality data.We’re talking survey grade bathymetry data from the Acoustic Doppler Profiler, calculating the best discharge measurements possible, and the highest resolution underwater imaging around.And it uses industry- proven HYPACK surveying software to bring together all these measurements into a nice surveying package. It’s the first ASV system to be specifically designed around dedicated sensors and hydrographic data acquisition software. Geoff: And SeaRobotics' decades of design experience helped create a seamless vehicle that will hold up in the harshest of environments.There’s a huge learning curve around automation and we incorporated all of the lessons we’ve learned over the years into HYCAT. Looking forward, where do you see AUV or ASV technology heading in the next decade? Kevin: I think what we'll find as battery technology improves, as telecommunications improve, we'll be able to use these vehicles for longer and more elaborate missions. There will inevitably be more and more parameters we can measure through autonomous methods, as sensor manufacturers develop and release new technology to the market. I’d also expect to see more reliable collision avoidance systems as well. Geoff: Automated vehicles are already seeing heavy use with the military, in surveillance, in hydrography, for disaster response, for port authority surveys, and even habitat mapping. Basically, in a decade, if it floats, it will probably be automated. Using vehicles for monitoring projects will become more and more cost-effective and accessible to a wider group of organizations. I can’t even guess all the future applications of these autonomous vehicles because I’m approached almost weekly with new problems that this technology can easily solve. HYCAT ASV COMPONENTS LEARN MORE @ YSI.com/HYCAT SonTek HydroSurveyor M9 YSI EXO2s Sonde Platform Protected Pocket Thruster with SST Guard Onboard Windows 10 Data Acquisition Computer with HYPACK MAX Software Hemisphere AtlasLink™ RTK GNSS Receiver Imagenex Yellowfin Side Scan Sonar Health LED, Safety Kill Lanyard, and IP67 User USB Port 5.8 GHz Wireless Coms Foam Filled Unsinkable Hulls