Meet OceanOne, the humanoid scuba diver that’s launched underwater robotics to new heights — or rather, new depths. The 5-foot-long robot is an artificially intelligent avatar for underwater archaeologists, allowing them to explore thousands of feet below the surface without ever getting wet. Created by Stanford University science professor Oussama Khatib, the “robo mermaid” is equipped with two fully articulated arms and stereoscopic vision that allows the pilot to see everything it sees. But it’s OceanOne’s hands that make it truly revolutionary.
“The most amazing thing about it is that you can feel what the robot is doing while you’re up on the boat,” Khatib says. “It’s almost like you are there. With the sense of touch, you are creating a new dimension of perception.”
OceanOne’s hands are fitted with force sensors that provide a sense of touch by sending haptic feedback to the operator’s joysticks in the form of forces, vibrations and motions.