|Rochester Photo Negative
|Maritime Platform / Vessel
|Hand held underwater viewing system
|25 Nov 1988
|Negatives Cabinet PM ("54/" Negs) [RAA Office]
The main aim of the advanced underwater stereoscopic viewing system was to provide the operator of a remotely controlled underwater vehicle with a high quality stereoscopic view of the underwater work site. In addition, a high speed pan and tilt gimbal allows the underwater cameras to be slaved to the position of the hand steered display unit which is situated inside the control cabin on board ship. This arrangement provides the user with a strong impression of actually being at the worksite by allowing him to 'look around' and also greatly facilitates the performance of manipulative tasks by presenting him with a three dimensional view of the task.
This development was started by FARL in 1982 and followed the earlier development and trials of a monocular helmet display system controlling an RCV225 'Flying Eyeball' submersible. The programme was supported by the Department of Energy, as part of a long term programme to advance underwater viewing technology. The first contract was awarded in 1980 and Laboratory commissioning of the system was completed in November 1985
After preliminary pressure tests on each separate item of the underwater system at the GEC Avionics'Offshore Projects facility at Nailsea, the system was taken to Slingsby Engineering Limited, North Yorkshire, for a fully operational pressure test during December 1985.
Successful undersea trials of the Stereo Viewing System were carried out in March 1986 as part of the trials of the GEC Avionics/OSEL ‘DRAGON FLY ' sub-sea vehicle. The advantages of high quality stereo vision in carrying out remote manipulative tasks were convincingly demonstrated.