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Talk-04: The Application of MOOS in Shenyang Institute of Automation

Junbao Zeng, State Key Laboratory of Robotics, Shenyang Institute of Automation, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shenyang 110016, China

Shenyang Institute of Automation (SIA) is affiliated to Chinese Academy of Sciences, which is the earliest institution to start research on UUV in China. SIA began applying MOOS in its UUV development since 2010. So far, MOOS has been applied to several AUVs developed in SIA. Although MOOS brings us the convenience in programming, we also found some problems and improved the corresponding parts. The follows are some cases describing the MOOS applications in SIA.

"Explorer 100" Portable AUV is the first one to apply the MOOS in SIA. Its main function is to monitor the underwater environment.

Its specifications are as follows: Weight(Dry): 46kg;

  • Length: 1.7m;
  • Diameter: 200mm;
  • Speed: 3~5kn;
  • Depth Rating: 100m;
  • Navigation: GPS, Compass, Depth Sensor, DVL; Communication mode: Wi-Fi, satellite and radio; Maximum distance: 70km.

Based on the hardware structure, we designed the corresponding MOOSApps. I will describe each MOOSApp briefly in following. the battery and propulsion system communicate with main control computer via CAN bus at a same port, so we prepared a MOOSApp named iBattery/Propulsion which can not only collect the data from battery node but also can send control command to propulsion node using CAN bus software driver. The MOOSApp of pSystemCheck is very important application which monitors all system states, including sensor voltage, motor current, navigational states and so on, and takes emergency measures, such as dropping ascent weight. Moreover, pSystemCheck can also write all the fault events to the file named Blackbox. When we test this AUV in lake, we found some application suddenly stop running sometimes, it is very dangerous, so we add a process checking application named pProcessCheck, which can monitor all the MOOSApp’s running states, if one of MOOSApps stop running, the application of pProcessCheck will reboot this MOOSApp right now. The original MOOSLog records data into a text file, if AUV dive long time, the log file will be huge, so we changed the record file format in the log application and make the size of log file smaller. When AUV ascent to the surface, we need use radio to remote control AUV approaching surface vessel for retrieval, so we add a application named iRadio which can receive the commands from operator and send AUV states to control box on vessel. A module that integrates GPS and Iridium was applied on this AUV, we improved the GPS software driver and make it send GPS data at regular intervals via Iridium satellite to surface vessel when arriving at the surface. All the power of sensors and control devices were managed by IO pin via relay, so we add a application name iAD/IO into MOOS, which can turn on or off every device switch and sample analog signal, such as depth sensor signal.

"Explorer 100" Portable AUV used RDI ExplorerDVL for navigation, the maximum altitude of this phased array DVL is 75m, if the depth of sea floor is beyond 75m, the DVL will not output the accuracy velocity data at the beginning of dive, so there will be a navigation error at this period, in order to reduce this error and make the AUV dive in a small area, we designed a new spiral dive task in MOOS, it could make portable AUV dive along a spiral trajectory. We also applied MOOS on a Full depth HROV demo platform "Hadal". "Hadal" had finished several diving in Mariana Trench, the maximum dive depth was 10767 meters.

Recently, we have obtained a research funding from Chinese government to develop a large full depth HROV which will be equipped with a manipulator in the front of the body. The MOOS will be applied on this HROV. We plan to use the low-powered CPU (I.MX6Q ARM Cortex-A9) as its main processor.


  • Communications
  • Cross Domain UxVs
  • Command and Control, Mission Planning