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AUV Real-Time Acoustic Obstacle Detection and Avoidance

Serge Karabchevsky, Boris Braginsky, Ilan Zohar, Hugo Guterman


Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs) operate in unknown underwater environments and take decisions based on sensor readings, without any link with a human operator. It is critical for the AUVs to be able to avoid submerged obstacles such as cliffs, wrecks and floating mines to improve vehicle survivability. In this study, a real–time obstacle detection and avoidance algorithm that uses forward looking sonar is presented. FPGA technology was used to attain real-time processing. The proposed algorithms are focused on horizontal plane obstacle detection and avoidance.

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