EIVA is releasing a new product onto the market! We have developed our very own autopilot and extended NMEA format – ideal for powerful control of USVs, enabling autonomy.

This autopilot was developed as an integrated companion to NaviSuite Kuda, EIVA’s hydrographic survey software bundle, which excels at automated and remote hydrographic surveys. By integrating our software with a powerful new hardware solution, we have added to our pool of streamlined total solutions.

In this article, we will dive into how the newly released NaviSuite Kuda – Autopilot provides features such as…

  • Superior vessel control
    • Accurate line-keeping – even in sharp turns
    • Optimised survey area coverage
    • Thruster status
    • Safe parking by enabling your vessel to hold a position
  • Support for a wide variety of vessels, with both thruster & motor steering in many modes
  • Easy to shift between automatic and manual steering with radio-controlled joystick

Precise, optimised surveys with EIVA’s autopilot & NaviSuite Kuda

EIVA’s newly developed autopilot can perform line-keeping precisely (typically with an accuracy of +/- 15 cm). This precision is further improved when the autopilot is used with EIVA’s own NaviSuite Kuda software, rather than the standardised NMEA APB interface. This hydrographic software not only improves the vessel control and interface, as we will dive into below, but brings a fleet of benefits to any hydrographic survey…
NaviSuite Kuda enables automation in surveys – all the way from planning to processing

NaviSuite Kuda prevents overshooting in turns

In addition to creating a precise autopilot, the EIVA team has designed an extended autopilot format which, unlike the standardised NMEA APB format, allows you to control the speed of the vessel. This extra control means you can use NaviSuite Kuda software to make predictions and automatically correct your steering based on the vessel’s actual position and speed in real time. You can thereby avoid overshooting – even in challenging situations such as sharp turns.
Watch the autopilot in action – Following a runline, holding position, remote display and more

Keep an eye on your thrusters

NaviSuite Kuda’s extended autopilot interface also provides information on the status of your vessel’s thrusters – for example the battery, power and RPM. NaviSuite Kuda can then send you an alarm based on this information – for example notifying you if the battery is low.

Hold position – and stay safe

By allowing you to hold your vessel’s position, EIVA’s autopilot interface increases the safety of your USV and makes it easy to park at a safe location.

Extensive support for steering with thrusters or motors

Thanks to its modular design, the NaviSuite Kuda – Autopilot can easily adapt to a variety of thruster and/or motor configurations. For example, it supports vessels using both thrusters and motors – with these different variants:

NaviSuite Kuda – Autopilot (ESC): Supports two ESC-based thrusters at once. ESC-based thrusters are available from for example Blue Robotics and Hydromea.

NaviSuite Kuda – Autopilot (TQ Bus): Supports two TQ Bus-based motors from Torqeedo.

NaviSuite Kuda – Autopilot supports steering in both vectoring (difference in power between two thrusters) and rudder (moving the thruster or rudder using a servo) modes – used individually or combined.

NaviSuite Kuda – Autopilot supports a variety of steering configurations, here a TQ Bus-based motor is being used in a HydroSurv USV

Easy to shift between manual and automated steering

If needed, it’s possible to take control of your automated survey with a radio-controlled joystick. The autopilot works with radio-controlled joysticks, and EIVA offers a robust, small joystick designed for this purpose, available as an optional add-on.

Both automatic (on the laptop) and manual steering (with the joystick) are supported by NaviSuite Kuda – Autopilot

So autonomous it almost sails itself onto the market

The first customer of the new NaviSuite Kuda – Autopilot is HydroSurv. They have ordered several units to integrate with their USVs and we look forward to seeing this autopilot set sail around the world!

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