The Blueye Pioneer underwater drone joining the Nansen Legacy to the Arctic

Monday, September 10, 2018 / Barents Sea

The Nansen Legacy project aims to understand more about the climate- and ecosystem change in the Arctic. With a team of researchers from six different Universities, our Co-Founder Martin Ludvigsen brought the Blueye Pioneer underwater drone to the Barents Sea on the RV Kronprins Haakon. The research objective was to identify and quantify the process that are important for the heat budget of the ocean north of Svalbard.

In addition to co-founding Blueye Robotics, Martin Ludvigsen is a Professor and manager of the Applied Underwater Laboratory (AUR-Lab) at the Department of Marine Technology at NTNU. With a research team lead by Prof. Ilker Fer from the University of Bergen, Martin and the Blueye Pioneer joined the research vessel Kronprins Haakon to the North of Svalbard in the Barents Sea to understand more about the heat budget of the Arctic and how this information could provide important pointers to how our climate is changing.

Martin and a research member in a boat holding the Blueye Pioneer
Martin holding the Blueye Pioneer and the RV Kronprins Haakon behind. Foto: Martin Ludvigsen, NTNU
The research vessel Kronprins Haakon
The RV Kronprins Haakon. Foto: Martin Ludvigsen, NTNU

The underwater drone served a purpose as providing an impression of the underside of the ice floes as the research vessel moved forward into the Arctic ice.

Using the drone we got a view of the morphology on the underside of the ice floes on which the University of Oslo put wave sensors - Martin Ludvigsen, NTNU

Blueye Pioneer video recording below the ice floes
Screenshot from Blueye Pioneers video recording below the ice floes. Foto: Martin Ludvigsen, NTNU

In addidion to observing the underside of the ice, the research team also both captured images of a wandering polar bear and a Comb Jelly (possibly a Beroe Cucumis).

A wandering polar bear
Wandering polar bear. Foto: Marika Marnela, UNIS
Comb Jelly below the ice floes
Screenshot from Blueye Pioneers video recording a Comb Jelly, possibly a Beroe Cucumis. Foto: Martin Ludvigsen, NTNU

Using the Blueye Pioneer underwater drone for research below the surface gives researchers the possibility to stay in a fixed position or move slowly for thorough inspections, provide powerful LED lights when operating in dark waters, a battery life of 2 hours and records full HD video with easy transferring to you preferred device. The drone is also designed to handle both tropical and arctic waters.

Interested in reading more stories like this? We have also attended other research projects at e.g. Svalbard and Great Barrier Reef.

Visiting the Arctic with the Blueye Underwater Drone