The Wave Glider is a solar and wave-powered robot designed by Liquid Robotics to serve as a platform for ocean observation, data collection, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. The project has just been awarded $22 million in Series D financing, which will go to further its development as it begins to explore the ocean blue.
The Wave Glider is powered by solar energy as well as the up-and-down motion of waves. By sourcing all the energy it needs from its environment, the robot “can travel to a distant area, collect and transmit data in real-time [via satellite or short-range radio], and then return for maintenance without ever requiring a ship to leave port.”
The submerged glider can hit a speed of two knots as it travels the ocean for scientific purposes, offshore oil and gas exploration, and for a variety of national security uses.
Liquid Robotics said it is currently testing the glider for use in a variety of scenarios, including conducting scientific research for the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration and several premier oceanographic facilities such as the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and the University of Hawaii.