Autonomous Deep-Water Vehicle Vityaz Sank To The Bottom Of The Mariana Trench
On May 8, 2020, at 22:34 Moscow time, the Russian Autonomous uninhabited underwater vehicle Vityaz plunged to the bottom of the Mariana trench. Vityaz's sensors recorded a depth of 10028 meters.
During this dive, a pennant dedicated to the 75th anniversary of victory in the great Patriotic war was delivered to the bottom of the Mariana trench.
The device carried out mapping, photo, and video shooting of the seafloor studied the parameters of the marine environment. The duration of the mission, excluding diving and surfacing, was more than 3 hours.
Vityaz became the world's first fully Autonomous uninhabited underwater vehicle that reached the deepest point of the World's ocean. It is an integral part of the ultra-deep diving complex, the development of which was started in September 2017, when Russian shipbuilders began implementing an innovative project to create a mobile marine robotic complex designed for scientific research in any area of the World's oceans.
The ultra-deep diving complex is capable of operating at the extreme depths of the World's oceans. It received its name in honor of the research vessel Vityaz which for almost 20 years was the flagship of the expeditionary fleet of the USSR.
The Vityaz complex includes an Autonomous uninhabited vehicle, a deep-water bottom station, and control point equipment. The ship's equipment of the complex provides information exchange of the carrier vessel with the underwater vehicle and the bottom station in real-time via a hydroacoustic channel. The complex consists entirely of components of domestic production.
The equipment allows the device to perform a survey and bathymetric survey of the area, sampling, sonar survey of the bottom relief, to measure the hydrophysical parameters of the marine environment.
In contrast to The Kaiko and Nereus devices that previously worked in this area, the Vityaz device functions completely independently. Thanks to the use of artificial intelligence elements in the control system of the device, it can independently bypass obstacles on the course, find a way out of limited space, and solve other intellectual problems.
"The may 8 dive to the bottom of the Mariana trench was the first stage in a series of Vityaz experiments," said Andrey Grigoriev, General Director Of the Foundation for advanced research.
"This is the first of the experiments that are planned as part of the Vityaz project. It was carried out by the joint efforts of Russian shipbuilders and scientific teams of the Russian Academy of Sciences with the support of the Pacific fleet. The success of the experiment confirmed the correctness of the design solutions chosen by the developers of the complex, and also demonstrated effective and fruitful cooperation within the framework of wide cooperation of the project participants," said Andrey Grigoriev.
He thanked all the organizations of the domestic industry involved in the project. According to him, the Vityaz project is a further development of domestic achievements in the field of creating deep-sea Autonomous complexes, including those that do not have restrictions on the depth of immersion.
In turn, the General Director of JSC "Central Design Bureau of Marine technology "Rubin" Igor Vilnit said that the project "Vityaz" gave an opportunity to show all the accumulated knowledge and experience in creating robotic systems and designing unique equipment that has no analogs in the world, to implement in practice new approaches to working with 3D modeling and computer-aided design systems.
"During the work on the Vityaz project, a full cycle of creating modern high-tech equipment was implemented, from a design by design departments to conducting deep-water tests in remote areas of the Pacific ocean. Solving these tasks in a short time, which was set by the FPI, is a unique experience for young engineers and designers. We thank FPI for the opportunity to acquire this invaluable experience and plan to continue our mutually beneficial cooperation," Igor Vilnit said.