Field Report: Exploring Fronts with Multiple Robots
This paper presents a report from a cruise onboard the R/V Falkor oceanographic vessel from the Schmidt Ocean Institute. The goal of this cruise was to demonstrate a novel approach to observe the ocean with multiple underwater, surface, and aerial vehicles, as well with the R/V Falkor also used as the base and control center for all assets. We describe the planning phase leading up to the cruise, the technical approach, developments and timeline of results and decisions made throughout the cruise.Our approach combines a set of new technologies that enabled scientists and engineers to obtain a synoptic view of the study area, with adjustable spatial and temporal resolution, and to compare data collected in near real-time to the outputs of computational models. This approach was applied to map the Pacific Ocean's Subtropical front with unprecedented spatial and temporal resolutions.