Underwater Data Collection Using Robotic Sensor Networks
The authors examine the problem of utilizing an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) to collect data from an underwater sensor network. The sensors in the network are equipped with acoustic modems that provide noisy, range-limited communication. The AUV must plan a path that maximizes the information collected while minimizing travel time or fuel expenditure. They propose AUV path planning methods that extend algorithms for variants of the Traveling Salesperson Problem (TSP). While executing a path, the AUV can improve performance by communicating with multiple nodes in the network at once. Such multi-node communication requires a scheduling protocol that is robust to channel variations and interference.