Ultimate ocean depth packaging for a digital ring laser gyroscope
Bowen, Martin F.
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A Honeywell GG 1320AN Digital Ring Laser Gyroscope (RLG), typically an aviation sensor, has been adapted for use as part of a navigation package rated to ocean depths of 6,000 meters. Researchers and engineers at the Deep Submergence Laboratory (DSL) of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) designed a high-density instrument package around the basic RLG. The integrated instrument is modular and field serviceable. It includes a chassis, housing, a Crossbow 6-axis dynamic measurement unit (DMU), battery backup, power regulation, support circuitry and robust interfaces. A pressure-proof titanium case and non-corroding accessories ensure that the RLG will remain unaffected by prolonged immersion in seawater. Associated mounting bracketry allow the housing to be axially registered alongside the navigation suites of various deep diving WHOI assets, or with any host platform capable of caring a 25 pound payload. Primary RLG platforms will be the manned deep submergence vehicle ALVIN, the unmanned remotely operated vehicle JASON, and the unmanned autonomous vehicle ABE. As an extremely accurate yaw rate measuring device, the RLG will provide navigation data far more reliable and precise that has been available to scientists in the past. The WHOI RLG has been used successfully on one JASON cruise.