An investigation on the accuracy of regional ocean models through field trials
Smith, Ryan N. , Kelly, Jonathan, Nazarzadeh, Kimia, & Sukhatme, Gaurav S. (2013) An investigation on the accuracy of regional ocean models through field trials. In IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2013), 6 - 10 May 2013, Kongresszentrum Karlsruhe, Karlsruhe, Germany.
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Recent efforts in mission planning for underwater vehicles have utilised predictive models to aid in navigation, optimal path planning and drive opportunistic sampling. Although these models provide information at a unprecedented resolutions and have proven to increase accuracy and effectiveness in multiple campaigns, most are deterministic in nature. Thus, predictions cannot be incorporated into probabilistic planning frameworks, nor do they provide any metric on the variance or confidence of the output variables. In this paper, we provide an initial investigation into determining the confidence of ocean model predictions based on the results of multiple field deployments of two autonomous underwater vehicles. For multiple missions conducted over a two-month period in 2011, we compare actual vehicle executions to simulations of the same missions through the Regional Ocean Modeling System in an ocean region off the coast of southern California. This comparison provides a qualitative analysis of the current velocity predictions for areas within the selected deployment region. Ultimately, we present a spatial heat-map of the correlation between the ocean model predictions and the actual mission executions. Knowing where the model provides unreliable predictions can be incorporated into planners to increase the utility and application of the deterministic estimations.
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