Throughout the history of human civilization, we have explored the recesses of the earth. Although we already know and map more than 70% of the Earth’s land surface, we don’t know much about the ocean floor. In fact, it is said that we know more about the surface of Mars than we do about the ocean floor. To date, only more than 20% of the seabed has been successfully mapped.
Because of that, there are some of the latest technological inventions that will eventually make it easier for us to create maps for the ocean floor. At the same time, we can better understand the state of our oceans.
The importance of the ocean floor is more than science, this robot will not die in the middle of the ocean
Seabed maps are very important to us. When we get a complete picture of the ocean floor, we will be able to build more accurate climate models, provide accurate information about ships in the ocean, build telecommunications cables, and protect marine species. These things are called the ‘blue economy’. It is valued at about $3 million a year by 2030.
Due to the needs of the blue economy, many are racing to create technologies that are more environmentally friendly, economical, efficient and durable. Underwater robotic vehicles equipped with various sensors have become one of the main options of researchers.
The vehicle can collect information more quickly and cheaply. The problem is the battery issue. The battery is less durable and needs a charger. When you want to replace the battery, the issue of transportation is the main problem that complicates the work of mapping the use of this underwater vehicle.
Thus, a company called Seatrac presented a robotic technology that uses energy from its own oceans. Its founder, Yi Chao, once worked at NASA. While at NASA, he explored robot technology and allowed the robot to operate non-stop…using the temperature of the sea.
Changes in the temperature of the sea have something to do with the temperature of the land. During that day, sometimes the sea temperature will be hot and other times cold. It is also equipped with sonar technology to map the seabed area around it. The robot will then return to earth to send its findings via satellite.
The available floating technology offers a great opportunity, the cost is more or less the same as that of a space exploration mission.
Seatrec technology is environmentally friendly and easy to use. Even so, the capital to develop this project of mapping the seabed of the Earth is really expensive. Seatrec’s own technology is right in price, performance and advantages that can be obtained. For example, the Seatrec can last a long time in the water and move on its own, only with the floatation technology aided by the power of the pressure difference in the water.
The typical Seatrec float model is estimated to cost $20,000. If you install it once with the Seatrec power system, that’s $25,000 added. In this early phase, he was only able to create fewer than 100 tools per year, and these were typically for marine researchers. However, this technology is easy to develop because it can still be applied to any other mapping tool to expand the range of tracking people.
Of course, with this advanced technology, this robot is required to work all over the world. However, Yi Chao estimates that 3,000 Seatrecs will need to operate for at least 10 years to fully complete the mapping of the seafloor. It takes between $3 and $5 billion dollars to do that kind of operation. The value of that amount is roughly the same as the sponsorship of the Mars exploration mission.
For now, the company has managed to raise $2 million to further expand manufacturing of the technology. Much help and financial sponsorship is still needed for Seatrec operations to continue to be able to map the Earth’s ocean world.
We hope that in the future Seatrec will need to increase the number of awareness and promotion campaigns related to this person’s technology. This technology actually helps us directly understand the ocean floor, so that we can preserve and conserve the marine environment before more environmental damage occurs.