First lab tests

First lab tests


Here are some impressions of our lab tests at the Leibniz-Institute for Baltic Sea Research. Now our ROV Drive Prototype is finally in its element and working great!

The nozzle and the propeller were manufactured with a 3D printer and were hydrodynamically optimized in CFD analyses for the drive of ROVs. In addition, the nominal speed and torque of our BLDC motor were adapted to the propeller.

The drive is extremely quiet and powerful. Calibrations with the motor controller could be carried out in the test basin without any problems. This was followed by various thrust tests with different hardware and software configurations. First test results already showed a thrust of 20 kgf at 1700 W input.

In the following revisions we will further increase the power and expect a thrust of more than 30 kgf.


Pressure tolerant motor controller

Pressure tolerant motor controller


For our pressure-neutral ROV drive prototype, we needed a suitable motor controller in addition to the BLDC motor. Here we decided to use the ODrive from ODrive Robotics. The design is compact, powerful and simply well thought out.

After all the adjustments to the electronic components for use in the deep sea, we were able to connect the controller to our BLDC motor and integrate it into the network of our ROV via our pressure-neutral Ethernet adapter. Furthermore, we can communicate with the controller via UART, USB and CAN BUS.

In combination with our BLDC motor we are able to develop high precision and powerful manipulators for the deep sea.


BLDC Motor prototyping

BLDC Motor prototyping


We developed a high-performance BLDC Motor for deep sea applications. Pressure tolerant and for the most parts 3D printed. Built up with a disc brake for some tests we get some very promising results. The fir­st motor could already take up an electrical power of 2 kw and achieved an efficiency of over 55% and a torque of more than 4 Nm in water. The cast rotor, stator and the ceramic ball bearings are surrounded by water during operation.

A high-resolution sensor is also integrated in the stator to perfectly match the motor to the motor controller. In this configuration it is possible to set different angular positions, angular speeds and accelerations via the motor controller.

This makes our high-performance BLDC motor a 3D printed stepper motor!

For our pressure-neutral ROV drive prototype, we needed a suitable motor controller in addition to the BLDC motor. Here we decided to use the ODrive from ODrive Robotics (link: www.odriverobotics.com). The design is compact, powerful and simply well thought out.

After all the adjustments to the electronic components for use in the deep sea, we were able to connect the controller to our BLDC motor and integrate it into the network of our ROV via our pressure-neutral Ethernet adapter. Furthermore, we can communicate with the controller via UART, USB and CAN BUS.

In combination with our BLDC motor we are able to develop high precision and powerful manipulators for the deep sea.