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In order to get reliable communication no matterunder the water or above the surface, a kind of multi channel and distributed wireless communication network architecture for UUVs was presented. This network architecture includes underwater communication, surface communication and internal communication. Underwater communication is acoustic modem, and the surface communication consists of RF, Wi-Fi, BeiDou. Internal communication portal is TCP/UDP. In order to avoid interference and decrease the navigation resistance, a four-in-one compact antenna is designed which is installed on UUVs inverted pole style elevating mechanism. Through repeated tests in Qiandaolake, Zhejiang province, the acoustic communication distance under the water is validated to 11.2km the RF 12km, the Wi-Fi 300m, the BeiDou communication system could communicate even in the ravine. So the distributed communication system on the UUV is reliable and effective.


At the outset, I express sincere thanks to Principal Prof. Dr.M.C.Philipose who arranged all facilities needed for the smooth and easy completion of the seminar. My special thanks to Prof. Susan Abe (H.O.D, Department of Electronics and communication Engineering), for her kind co-operation and guidance to successfully complete this task. I am greatly indebted to our seminar in-charge faculty Er.Ashwin P.V, Er.RekhaSubash and Er.Abraham K Thomas Assistant Professor, Department of Electronics & Communication, who tirelessly helped me with the seminar and cleared my endless doubts I express heartfelt thanks and gratitude to all the members of the faculty Electronics and Communication Department for their corporation and encouragement. Above all, I humbly surrender to God Almighty, I am grateful to my parents for their encouragement, and blessings to carry out this seminar work very effectively and successfully.
































General Architecture

Full Duplex Communication Configuration in RF System

BeiDou Networking Architecture


Out line Drawing of Four in One Compact Antenna


Schematic Diagram of UUVs Elevating Mechanism



During the last few years unmanned underwater vehicles (UUV) technology has evolved from concept demonstrators developed by research institutes and universities to commercial products. UUVs are widely used in environmental exploration, path planning, sea investigation, etc[1]. With careful decisions and investments today, UUV can be positioned to become significant contributors to the Navys capabilities tomorrow, and be ready for the unexpected future. A remote mother platform which sends instructions to the UUV by wireless communication is placed several kilometers away. Therefore a robust and effective communication link plays an important role. Currently fielded UUVs have limited communication capability and suffer from unreliable communication links due to the constant movement of the UUV at the water surface. The UUV undergoes significant pitch and roll in the water and the antenna system is critical to the overall success of the UUV mission. There is limited space available however on the UUV for the communication antennas which limits the size and also the gain of the radiators. An antenna that can satisfy a stringent set of requirements, including volume and power constraints, is key to addressing the limitations of currently fielded UUVs as well as being able to support future UUV platforms that will provide significantly increased mission capabilities[2,3]. This paper focuses on the design of vehicle's multi-channelcommunications module and its external communications channels as well as the proprietary fleet management software used in surface operations. The communications module provides four modes of operation supported by four communication mediums external to the vehicle and one internal. The internal channel leads to a distributed network supported by Ethernet using TCP/IP and UDP protocols. The distributed control network passes messages between the surface and the UUV system. The four external communication modes is RF, Wi-Fi, satellite and acoustic communication respectively.

Distributed communication has been widely embraced as a cost-effective means of performing UUVs intensive tasks by pooling the resources of collaborating systems. The communication software and distributed services will be more reliable, efficient, flexible, and extensible than integrated communication mode. To realize UUVs exchanging needed information of no matter above the water surface or under the water, or inside the UUV, effective, reliable communication channel is essential to implement the missions such as assigning missions, emergency protection, state monitoring, data downloading etc. For UUV has a high integrated, intelligent and autonomous control system, and each task unit need to communicate with each, collect and process the dada at a high speed when navigating autonomously, so the communication architecture for UUVs introduced in this paper adopts multi-channel and distributed structure.

This kind of communication is composed of underwater communication, water surface communication and UUV internal communication. As the UUV navigates under the water most of the time, in order to capture the track, the mutual communication in real time of UUV and support vessel is needed. Underwater communication applies the mode of acoustic modem. Except that UUV can implement the panned missions under the water, some sections such as experiments test, mission assigning, launching and retrieval, data downloading, program updating, configuring the parameters of some sensors, etc, must be performed above the water surface. So the communication above the water surface seems especially important. There are three types of communication above the water surface which are RF communication, satellite communication and Wi-Fi. The general multi-channel and distributed communication network architecture for UUVs is shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1. General architecture of UUVs distributed communication network


Acoustic energy propagation is efficient in the water environment, so the underwater communication mode is acoustic communication[5]. In order to get efficient transmission and reception of acoustic sound pressure and longer transmission distance, the transducer is physically immersed in the water environment and the chosen acoustic modem type is AM300 produced in Tritechcompany of England whose frequency band is 8-16kHz. Through the acoustic modem, when UUV implements some tasks under the water, support vessel can capture the UUVs track and interfere UUVs action of depth changing, direction changing, mission text replanning, mission suspending, emergency emerging from the water, emergency ejection, etc. From the analysis above, it is well knows that acoustic modem is the sonly critical means to interfere UUV when navigating under the water.


Surface communication network is deployed by underwater platforms as a means of communication with platforms above the water surface. It includes three modes which are Radio Frequency communication, satellite communication, wireless fidelity communication respectively.

A.Remote Radio Frequency communication

Radio frequency (RF) is a rate of oscillation in the range of about 30kHz to 300GHz, which corresponds to the frequency of electrical signals normally used to produce and detect radio waves. RF usually refers to electrical rather than mechanical oscillations, although mechanical RF systems do exist. The frequency is lower, the transmission distance is further and the antenna is shorter. So in open sea level, the general communication distance is about 10km, to make the dimensions of RF antenna smaller, the frequency is not too low. The chosen RF frequency brand for UUV is 250MHz-260MHz and the type is ND250A. RF communication mode is commonly half duplex which makes the monitor to the support vessel very difficult. So full-duplex communication of RF is essential, but a duplexer must be loaded. Electrically, a duplexer is a device using sharply tuned resonate circuits to isolate a transmitter from a receiver. This allows both of them to operate on the same antenna at the same time without the transmitter RF frying the receiver. Note that there must be a separation of the transmitting and receive frequency. RF full-duplex communication on UUV is shoin figure 2.

Figure 2. Full-duplex communication configuration of remote Radio Frequency system

B. Satellite communication When UUV emerges from the water after long range navigation, maybe UUV is far away from the supply vessel which cant receive the position information through RF communication mode. So in broad sea area, UUV must apply remote communication method. As satellite communication has the advantages of large coverage, further communication capacity, high quality, rapid networking technologies which plays an important role So satellite communication is the optimal choice for UUVs remote water surface communication. At present, several satellite channels can be used, such as Inmarsat-C,


GlobalstarOmnitraces, Vast, etc, and INMARSAT-C is the most popular. In recent years, a new generation communication and navigation satellite-BeiDou system has developed in China which has fast response speed, large capacity channel, lower communication cost and is Chinese autonomous system. It is more suitable for China domestic users. The BeiDous brief communication function permits two-way data transmission between a user and another user, a user and ground control center. Generally, a common user can transmit the data of 120 bytes each time. And GPS cant afford the serve[6]. The BeiDou networking architecture diagram is seen in figure 3.

Figure 3. Diagram of BeiDou networking architecture

C. Wi-Fi communication

When making experiments, maybe the program needs to be updated and after each mission, mass data of UUVs marine observation data and self operating condition needs to be downloaded. Although the requirement of transmission distance is near (300m-500m), but the transmission speed must be fast. The fast communication mode adopted on the designed UUV is Wi-Fi. Wi-Fi (short for "wireless fidelity") is a term for certain types of wireless local area network (WLAN) that use specifications in the 802.11 family. The term Wi-Fi was created by an organization 1called the Wi-Fi Alliance, which oversees tests that certify

product interoperability. A product that passes the alliance tests is given the label "Wi-Fi certified" (a registered trademark). Originally, Wi-Fi certification was applicable only to products using the 802.11b standard. Today, Wi-Fi can apply to products that use any 802.11 standard. The 802.11specifications are part of an evolving set of wireless network standards known as the 802.11 family. The particular specification under which a Wi-Fi network operates is called the "flavor" of the network. The standard is 2.4GHz 802.11b, and the communication rate high to 11Mbps.

All the computers are divided an IP address. When UUV returns to near the support vessel, it is connected with the surface workstation. Through FTP software FileZilla which is an open source software distributed free of charge under the terms of the GNU General Public License, it is easily to log in each computer from the surface workstation and we can download all the useful data.

D. Design of compact and anti-pressure antenna

Based on the analysis above, it is well known that three pieces of communication antenna must be deployed which are RF antenna, Wi-Fi antenna and BeiDou antenna. In addition, one piece of navigation antenna for GPS needs to be deployed too. It is impossible that four pieces of antenna with different frequency are installed in limited space of UUV without interference and increasing navigation resistance. So it is essential to design a kind of compact, integrated, anti-pressure and watertight antenna which is called four in one compact antenna. The key technique of the four in one antennas design is to keep each sub-antennas orientation and the higher gain. The design of the antennas directivity is according to the formula 1, its gain according to formula 2.
E(,) E(max)



Where F( , ) is the direction of normalized field, E(max) is the maximum value of E( , ) .


Where L is the antennas length, 0 is the working wavelength. The outline drawing is shown in figure 4.

Figure 4. Outline drawing of four in one compact antenna

To guarantee that when UUV emerges from the water, the antenna can be high above the water surface, inverted pole style antenna elevating mechanism is adopted in the UUV system. The schematic diagram is shown in figure 5.

Figure 5. Schematic diagram of UUVs elevating mechanism


There are two industrial embedded computers PC104 installed inside the UUVs electronic cabin which are mission control computer and dynamic control computer and manage the UUV in real time. Besides, one side scan sonar control and management computer and one multibeam sonar control and management computer are carried in the electronic cabin. In order to make UUV more stable and reliable, distributed architecture is applied among the computers which can implement fault diagnosis with each other. When the faults occur, corresponding action will be taken according to the dangerous level. The communication protocol is TCP/UDP among the computers and the communication mode among the sensors is serial communication.



In August 2010, UUV navigation experiment was conducted using developed UUV in Qiandao Lake, Zhejiang province. The communication system worked very well no matter whether the UUV is under or above the water. Through repeated tests, the acoustic communication distance under the water is 11.2km the RF 12km, the Wi-Fi 300m, the BeiDou communication system could communicate even in the ravine. It shows that the distributed communication system on the UUV is effective


This paper presents a multi-channel and distributed communication system for UUVs which includes underwater communication, surface communication and internal

communication. Underwater communication mode is the acoustic modem, and the surface communication consists of RF, Wi-Fi, BeiDou. Internal communication protocal is TCP/UDP. In order to avoid interference and decrease the navigation resistance, a four-in-one compact antenna is designed which is installed on UUVs inverted pole style elevating mechanism. Through repeated experiments, it indicates that the communication is reliable and useful for UUVs safe navigation.




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