Remotely Operated Vehicles

Constructing ROVs builds on basic lessons taught in buoy building by challenging students to design, build, and launch a more complex tool—remotely operated vehicle or "ROVs"—using PVC pipe, bilge pump motors, speaker wires, and simple switches. This activity allows students to explore the basic principles of design while expanding their ability to observe the underwater environment. Cameras and lights are added to create working observation systems, expanding the learning opportunities to introduce students to elements of habitat characterization. The activity takes two to three hours, but can be expanded with classroom lessons pre- and post-“launch.”

Student groups who are interested in furthering their involvement can enter into annual ROV building competitions sponsored by the Marine Advanced Technology Education Center (MATE).