The UK MOD has a fleet of self-driving boats that are useful for reducing costs and automating tasks. However, the ocean waves greatly affected their performance. In a traditional boat, the captain would observe the waves and adjust the boat’s course to minimize the rocking motion. The self-driving boats already have a range of sensors that could potentially be used to detect waves, such as high resolution radars or cameras. However, these sensors either had inadequate resolution or were unreliable products. The challenge was to detect ocean waves, including unpredictable rogue waves, using the minimum number of sensors possible and identifying the main wave direction to minimize the vessel’s rocking motion.
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