Laboratory Learning Program 2024 - Safe Robotics for Coral Reefs Conservation: Using Machine Learning to Navigate Ocean Currents (ECE-02)

Research Opportunity Number: ECE-02

Project Title: Safe Robotics for Coral Reefs Conservation: Using Machine Learning to Navigate Ocean Currents

Project Summary: Coral reefs are one of the most biologically diverse and economically valuable ecosystems on the planet. They provide a critical habitat for marine life and serve as a foundation for many human-driven industries. However, in recent decades, coral reef health has declined due to pollution, human interaction, and climate change. Current methods for monitoring coral reefs are often limited and invasive. By enhancing our understanding of coral reefs, ecologists can devise more effective strategies to mitigate the aforementioned challenges. This project aims to simulate a robotic system that can safely navigate underwater coral reef environments. This project hopes to aid ecologists in collecting valuable data.

Student Roles and Responsibilities: Specific goals of this project include: - Understand simple fluid dynamics simulation. Specifically, learn how water flows around obstacles underwater. - Create underwater environments for testing. - Explore and document machine learning techniques to model ocean currents. - Implement machine learning models via a supercomputer. - Test learned ocean current models. - Improve underwater navigation with machine learning techniques. - Present findings. Students can better prepare for this experience by learning Python, the standard Linux command line interface, and basic fluid dynamics simulations such as OpenFOAM.

Additional Considerations: N/A

Department/Institute: Electrical and Computer Engineering Department

Faculty Sponsor: Jaime Fernández Fisac

Participation Dates: 7/7/2024 to 8/23/2024

Stipend Offered: $0

Number of Internships Available: 0-1

Application Deadline: March 15, 2024, midnight eastern daylight time