Crab-like robot to be dispatched to the sunken siteUpdated: 2014-04-23 09:03:50 (KST)
This is a remote-controlled robot 'crabster' that can crawl along the bottom of seafloor.
This 2.4 meter-long, 2 meter-high machine weighs 650 kilograms and moves using 6 legs.
In the ocean, its weight reduces to 150 kilograms, due to buoyancy, enabling it to explore the water with a maximum speed of 0.1 meter per second.
'Crabster' is installed with a high-resolution scanning sonar, which helps it recognize objects that are within 100 meter distance.
It can shoot and record its surrounding using an ultrasonic camera, as well as 10 optical cameras, and can also collect samples using its long arms.
Developed by the Korea Institute of Ocean Science and Technology in 2010, the robot will take part in the ongoing search operation at the Sewol-ho ferry disaster site.
'Crabster' was made to be able to resist water currents that run up to 3.7 kilometers per hour.
"Using scanning sonar, we can expect to receive more information on how the sunken ferry is capsized, so that we can figure out the best way to rescue and salvage the vessel."
Unmanned submersible robots, or ROVs from Korea and the U.S. were dispatched to accident site, but have so far failed to gather any substantial results, as they were affected by the currents.
Unlike ROVs, experts hope this crab-like robot, which is able to withstand powerful currents, can help inspect the site and play an active role in the search operation.
Sohn Jung-in, Arirang News.