Underwater Rover Robotic Project
April 22, 2015- Local cinematographer and citizen scientist (and Emmy award winner!) Laura James joined two of our STEMbyTAF Lab teachers’ middle school students to begin an underwater rover robotics project. The TAF team is using OpenROV technology, thereby joining a global community of underwater videographers and researchers to construct an camera bot that navigates under water and relays video images of the ecosystems that are alive just under the surface. This project’s focus is on Hicklin Lake in Lakewood Park. Two years ago, the Friends of Hicklin Lake (led by the late Dick Thurnau) succeeded in installing two “floating islands” in the lake: floating mesh mats that support living freshwater plants that feed on the excess nutrients that are polluting the lake, cleanse the water, and provide habitat for diverse lake species. The objective of this expedition is to capture film of the lake bed underneath the floating islands, as well as in areas unaffected by the floating islands to see if there is a visible difference in environmental quality.
Ms. James is recording this four-session project and producing short videos that offer a beautiful view of BCLS, Lakewood Park and Hicklin Lake. Additionally, the video shows our students learning how to (safely!) construct electronic devices with multi-filament wires, acrylic casings, and circuit boards.
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Written by: Sarah Wilkes, Programs Manager, Video by Laura James