The Thwaites Glacier in an isolated part of Antarctica has the potential to cause a catastrophic rise in global sea levels. It is melting fast and accounts for four percent of the world’s annual sea level rise. The scientific community would like to monitor Thwaites in order that they can determine how quickly it is warming and how threatening it could prove to be.
The Australian Maritime College at the University of Tasmania has spent the past four years working on the nupiri muka, a fully autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) designed and built by
International Submarine Engineering (ISE) in Canada to venture deep beneath the Antarctic ice, gather data and then return to the support vessel.
After testing the AUV off the Tasmanian coast, followed by a capability demonstration trip to Antarctica in 2019, the team was finally ready to send nupiri muka on a mission in the Thwaites
The objective was to send the vehicle under the ice on a 60km round trip to gather data.
ISE installed two MATS 3G acoustic modems with which to monitor nupiri muka’s progress for the first few kilometers before running completely autonomously.
Find out more about the mission's operational and technical challenges and how Sercel's MATS 3G contributed to its success by downloading the case study.
Thank you to International Submarine Engineering (ISE) for their cooperation in writing this informative case study.