Although the deep sea plays a huge role in climate change, current oceanic research is prohibited by the high costs of the research equipment. LOBSTER wants to provide an affordable platform for scientific research by developing a prototype robot that can perform measurements and film parts of the seafloor at a depth of 6000m. Starting as an honours project in 2018, they had two years of gathering advisors and validating their key technologies before applying for the grant and becoming one of the first winners of the Ambitious Idea grant in December 2020.
After they had come up with innovative ways to handle the extreme pressure and ways to control the robot, they used the FAST Ambitious Idea grant to take the next step and give a technology demonstration with a complete seaproof prototype. They have planned multiple tests in a pond, the North Sea and the deep ocean.
Do you want to learn more about LOBSTER? Take a look at https://lobster-robotics.com/.