Underwater exploration robots can dive deep into the ocean to maintain security on docks or search for raw materials on the seafloor. These underwater exploration robots are equipped with sensors that help perform predetermined missions such as collecting high quality images underwater or gathering environmental data such as temperature, depth, salinity, etc. underwater exploration robots are available in various forms such as humanoid, crabs, etc.
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Rising demand for robotics in exploring the depths of the ocean so as to reduce human time and effort is a factor that is driving the market for underwater exploration robots. Furthermore, developments in computing and communication systems of underwater exploration robots, which is estimated to drive the market. Development of sensors resulting in better adaptive capabilities of underwater exploration robots is also a key factor fuelling the market. Researchers are also making an effort to lower the cost of these sensors, while improving their intelligence capabilities. This is also projected to significantly boost the market in the near future. The recovering oil & gas sector and increase in mining activities in APAC are also estimated to propel the demand for underwater exploration robots.
Underwater exploration robots face a few limitations despite the numerous advantages they offer. Special care needs to be taken to ensure that water does not enter into the brain of the robot, while it is under water, else the robot can either malfunction or stop working. Furthermore, inconvenience in handling the robot due to insufficient battery backup can be a restraint to the market.
In terms of type, the underwater exploration robot market can be segmented into remotely operated vehicle (ROV) robot, autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) robot or unmanned underwater vehicles. ROV robots are remotely operated by a human being either by means of a cable or a remote control. On the other hand, AUV robots are able to operate independently, with minimum technical support from a human being. AUVs can keep communicating with the operator through satellite signals or underwater acoustic beacons for those that require some level of control. Unmanned Underwater Vehicles, also called ‘Underwater Drones’, are unmanned vehicles that use ‘Operational Intelligence’ (OI) technology to carry out search missions, military and safety activities, and study and conservation of environment. In terms of way of locomotion, the underwater exploration robot market can be segmented into legged, wheeled, legged and wheeled, and tracked slip/slid.
In terms of end-use application, the underwater exploration robot market can be segmented into oil & gas, research, and military& defense. Underwater exploration robots find application in the oil & gas industry to explore crude oil reserves. Underwater exploration robots are also used for surveillance purposes, searching raw materials or for rescue and attack. For research activities underwater exploration robots are being used for mapping ocean geology. Several improvements are being carried out in new sensor development, automatic mission planning and execution software, distributed robotic control and better power systems.
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Key players operating in the underwater exploration robot market include Atlas Maridan Aps, Forum Energy Technologies Inc, Kongsberg Maritime Ltd, Oceaneering International Inc, Subsea 7 Ltd, Boston Engineering Corporation, C-Innovation LLC, Deep Ocean Engineering Inc, DOF Subsea Group, FMC Technologies Inc, Fugro India Pvt Ltd, Bluefin Robotics Corporation, Halline Marine Subsea International PLC, Helix Energy Solutions Group Inc, Teledyne Technologies Inc, Boeing, Saab Seaeye Ltd., and Soil Machine Dynamics (SMD) Ltd.
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