Assessment of AUV-borne acoustic and optical sensors for seabed and biotope mapping in MAREANO
MAREANO (NGU, Kartverket and HI) in collaboration with FFI conducted a survey using the autonomous underwater vessel (AUV) HUGIN HUS to assess the suitability and advantages of AUV-borne acoustic and optical tools for seabed and biotope mapping. Due to poor weather conditions, the first part of the cruise was carried out in Andfjorden, Nordland. The second part was carried out in the main target area of Vesterdjupet, Nordland. Both acoustic and optical data collection were affected by technical problems which reduced the data quality. Acoustic and optical data collected with the HUGIN HUS AUV were compared with acoustic data from surface vessels, and data from the standard MAREANO towed video system Campod. The analyses show a clear potential for using AUVs in MAREANO, but also clear limitations. Some of the limitations have been overcome by drastic improvements of the AUV technology since 2015.