Moog Supplies Camera System for WHOI Research Vessel
Research vessel Atlantis II underway with rugged, marine camera system from Moog
Moog Inc. Space and Defense Group has supplied the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) with a new, rugged camera system for launch and recovery of the Alvin submarine aboard the research vessel Atlantis II. The U.S. Naval Sea Systems Command mandates that the crew of Atlantis II be able to see the latch pin, which is part of the launch and recovery system (LARS) for use with Alvin. When WHOI upgraded and returned its Alvin submarine to service, the submarine’s size obscured the view of the latch pin from the “doghouse,” or aft compartment where the crew operates the hydraulic controls for the LARS. WHOI selected the Moog EXO Stainless Steel Corrosion Resistant Camera System to mount on the Atlantis II A-frame to provide visibility.
The operator working in the Atlantis’ doghouse needs to see the locking mechanism that prevents Alvin from dropping, if the rope ever failed, and this is why WHOI and Moog mounted the camera system on the ship’s A-frame. It is necessary to keep the camera focused on this pin during launch-and-recovery operations. When the LARS is not in use, the camera doubles as a security camera for either at-sea deck operations, or for dock-side security.
The Atlantis and her A-frame experience jittering from a complex series of hydraulic rams. Ordinary marine cameras cannot take the intense vibration. The Atlantis can also experience 30- to 40-foot swells at sea, and the Moog EXO Stainless Steel Corrosion Resistant Camera System has been the only camera technology capable of surviving the G-forces in this environment onboard Atlantis.
“If a camera housing mounted on the A-frame were to experience a crack – even a micron wide – while Atlantis was underway, the sea water would rush into the system like a sprinkler head,” said Mike Gagne, Marine Electronics Supervisor for Ship Operations, at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. “It’s critical to have a camera system rugged enough to withstand not only the vibration and shock, but the extremely corrosive effects from the sea water and air.”
Moog constructs its camera system’s housing and sunshield from 316 SS; it uses a special optically clear material for the camera’s lower dome. The camera system includes H.264 High Profile, MJPEG compression and ONVIF support to capture 1080P, high-definition video in extreme environments.