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Thread: The seas around our shores

  1. #1
    Grand Master PickleB's Avatar
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    The seas around our shores

    Last week I got an email from a society that I am a member of hoping to identify an unknown vessel:

    A "mystery vessel" has washed up on the island of Tiree in the Inner Hebrides off the West coast of Scotland.

    It looks to be a Wave Glider, but it has not been claimed.

    Tiree is open to the Atlantic to the West, so the vessel may well have travelled across the Atlantic from the USA or Canada or may have come from closer to home.

    There were two pictures included. These are the same but come from an online article on the same topic:





    Today I got an update:

    The vessel has been identified as a Wave Glider autonomous vessel, made by the company Liquid Robotics, who are a division of the Boeing company in the USA. Their website is at: www.liquid-robotics.com

    The Wave Glider is 3.05 metres long and uses wave motion on a wing suspended some 8 metres below it to power it at speeds of up to 1.3 knots. In addition it has solar panels on the topside to produce electricity to power the payload that it is carrying. The payload carried varies according to the mission chosen and can include an AIS receiver, camera, hydrophones, scientific sensors, satellite communications and much more. The vessel can be both initially programmed and also programmed in real time and accessed by using satellite/3G/WiFi communications. Examples of sensors and missions are shown on the manufacturer's website. It is typically used by both the US and UK Navies and by various government organisations. Naval versions tend to be painted black or grey and civilian versions painted yellow or orange. Typical cost for the vessel has been stated as 300,000 US Dollars.

    A number of these vessels have been found washed up recently, as follows.

    Isle of Tiree - October 2020
    Unst, Shetland Isles - 2020
    Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides - 2019
    Donnegal, Ireland 2019

    Due to the sensitive nature of some of the missions that these vessels are engaged on (surveillance etc.) the information about the owner is often not available. Liquid Robotics have been contacted about the above vessels and they have replied as follows: "In each of these cases the customer has been notified , but beyond that we do not comment on customer missions or vehicles without their permission".

    Further links to news items about these vessels are as follows:

    http://www.maritime-executive.com/ar...tiree-scotland

    http://www.ukdefencejournal.org.uk/u...up-in-scotland

    http://www.roboticsbusinessreview.co...s-drone-sector


    I would have thought that any hydrographic organisation would have been glad to have their equipment back. The same with the RN or USN. Maybe someone has reclaimed it but is refusing to be identified.

  2. #2
    Grand Master jwg663's Avatar
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    This was reported in the Scottish Daily Record (often known as the 'Day-Late Record'!) back on the ninth of October:

    https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/s...-over-22821235
    ______

    ​Jim.

  3. #3
    Master Maysie's Avatar
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    I am happy to admit that I know nothing about this type of unmanned boats, but surely they cant be very reliable if they keep being found washed up all over the place?

    Seems like a lot of moneys-worth of kit to just lose.

  4. #4
    Grand Master PickleB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwg663 View Post
    This was reported in the Scottish Daily Record (often known as the 'Day-Late Record'!) back on the ninth of October:

    https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/s...-over-22821235
    And it originated with HMCG on 30 September:

    Last edited by PickleB; 26th October 2020 at 13:40. Reason: added 2nd url

  5. #5
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    where i used to work i had to sign loads of forms to keep my mouth shut or else i wished i had never been born type of thing.

    literally stuff can fall from the sky lol, its hilarious

  6. #6
    I'd have thought that these are dubious under international maritime law. Vessels at sea are, as far as I recall, meant to be under command and someone should keep watch for others to avoid collision. Something size may not be much of a danger to a large ship, but a small yacht or fishing vessel colliding with one of these could be badly damaged.
    Last edited by davide; 26th October 2020 at 15:36.

  7. #7
    How does it move in any direction, does it have to do the equivalent of tacking using the waves?

  8. #8
    Grand Master PickleB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kingstepper View Post
    How does it move in any direction, does it have to do the equivalent of tacking using the waves?
    Best I can come up with: www.liquid-robotics.com/wave-glider/how-it-works

    Edit And then I found:



    See also https://youtu.be/KXpFsF2ASU4?t=210
    Last edited by PickleB; 26th October 2020 at 16:20.

  9. #9
    Im guessing it would be acceptable to claim finders-keepers and have it away for an impromptu tear-down?

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