The hybrid ROV Ariane represents the next generation of remotely operated submersibles which carry their own energy source in the form of lithium-ion batteries. Its only link to the surface is a fibre-optic cable.
Currently Ariane is deployed from the coastal vessels of the French oceanographic fleet, in particular the Europe, the Antea and the Côtes de la Manche.
The principal objective is to provide an alternative to the existing deep-water submersibles (Nautile, Victor 6000) which, because of their deployment needs in terms of vessel, their schedule and their cost, may not be the best suited to satisfy certain demands.
The hybrid ROV Ariane undertakes dives to 2,500 m for short missions requiring manipulation, sampling, inspection or optical and acoustic mapping.
Its propulsion system and navigation sensors enable it to work on any type of seabed, including very uneven ground such as canyons.
Fitted with HD video cameras and a pan and tilt digital camera, Ariane can undertake high-quality optical inspections and generate high-resolution photogrammetry (or 3D optical mapping).
Currently the following payload configurations are available:
- Exploring and Sampling: remotely operated manipulator arms (5 and 7 sections), a basket, a pan and tilt digital camera and sampling tools (suction sampler for fauna).
- Mapping: a multibeam echo sounder and a pan and tilt digital camera.