Robots Scout Indian Ocean Bed for MH370

The Mystery of Malaysian MH 370
  • The signals picked up by Australian air force planes were ruled out to be from the black boxes of the missing Malaysian aircraft MH370, squashing hopes of its blackbox still emitting signals. Absence of signals makes its retrieval very difficult, if not impossible, as every signal helps narrow down the search area.
  • The next step would be to map the ocean floors using ship’s Sonar to present the underwater robots to be used with a base map. Bluefin-21 robot which can create a high-resolution map of the seabed through sonar pulses is being used for this, presently at a depth of 600m of the total 4,500m of the Indian Ocean.
  • The Remora, an underwater robot which can function at a depth of 6,000 m was used to locate the wreckage of AF447 and for inspection of The Titanic. With the robot working under the surface, a team runs it from the surface.
  • The southern hemisphere winter is also likely to delay search operations.
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Exams Perspective:

  1. What is robotics?
  2. What are the components of a robot?
  3. What is Bluefin 21?
  4. What are some of the application of robotics?
  5. What is a black box?
  6. What is Sonar and how does it help locate a black box?
  7. What is nanotechnology? What are its applications?