RF1 is an autonomous underwater robot and the major goal of this project.


Propeller Shaft

The propeller shaft can be made (sufficiently) watertight with a stuffing box construction. Leakage of a couple drops per minute is to be expected, however. The leaking water will drop into a collector and the water level in the collector needs to be monitored (e.g., through optical detectors).


The software that controls the RF1 is split into two modules. The more complex module runs on the Raspberry Pi and performs image processing, trajectory planning, operational decision-making, and high-level hardware control tasks.

Autonomous Behaviors

  • Surfacing when the battery charge level drops under a threshold.
  • Surfacing when water leakage is detected.


  • Structural design
  • Electrical design
  • Manufacturing
  • Basic functional software
  • Testing and debugging