A Compact, Low-power Submersible Chemical Analyzer Payload for Autonomous Underwater Vehicles

Period of Performance: 01/22/2004 - 10/21/2004


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Subchem Systems, Inc.
65 Pier Road
Narragansett, RI 02882
Principal Investigator


SubChem Systems proposes to design and develop a compact, low power submersible chemical analyzer payload for deployment on autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV). The primary objective of this proposal is to demonstrate the feasibility of developing a Micro AUV Ready Chemical (MARCHEM) Analyzer. This device will be capable of performing real-time, rapid response measurements of trace chemicals in marine waters. This sensor will use specialized low-power, miniature, electro-fluidic and optical detection devices to accomplish the chemical analysis. The objective of the Phase I effort is to produce a system design and to investigate the feasibility for the development of a MARCHEM analyzer for ammonia as a payload for two types of AUVs: micro-sized propeller-driven vehicles and coastal gliders. SubChem Systems is working closely with the Navy to ensure that the technologies meet service needs and will be adopted by end-users. Further, we are working with the manufacturers of AUVs to ensure a pathway to commercialization and marketing.