Thursday, November 10, 2011

Students Use Robotics to do Underwater Archaology

FETCH ROBOT - AUV (Autonomous Underwater Vehicle)

"Students Use Futuristic Technology to Dive Into the Past

Newswise — A new partnership between the Virginia Institute of Marine Science and the Watermen’s Museum in historic Yorktown will give local students a unique opportunity to dive into Colonial history—literally.
The project, funded by a 1-year grant from the National Science Foundation, will allow the students to pilot unmanned robotic submarines in an attempt to monitor the conservation status of shipwrecked vessels scuttled by Lord Cornwallis during the Battle of Yorktown in 1781—the last major battle of the American Revolution.
Leading the project are Dr. Mark Patterson, head of the Autonomous Systems Laboratory at VIMS, and Dr. David Niebuhr, Director of the Watermen’s Museum. The students are from Point Option High School in Newport News, the Williamsburg Montessori Middle School, and Peasley Middle School in Gloucester. VIMS graduate student Jennifer Elliott, who is teaching at Peasley as part of the VIMS GK-12 partnership, will also be involved.
The project capitalizes on the recent discovery in the York River of two new shipwrecks from the siege of Yorktown. Previous archeological work had revealed the presence of nine other wrecks, including the HMS Betsy, the target of intensive study during the 1970s and 1980s. These wrecks are listed on the Virginia Landmarks Register and the National Register of Historic Places..."
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