Completed Bot House, LARS, Fiber Winding, and Digging Out

Ok, I’ll admit this post is actually a bit of a catch up, we had a pretty busy (awesome) week. The wind settled down enough for the carpenters and members of our team to get the roof on the Bot Garage!

The Bot Garage!

The Bot Garage! Now with a roof. Much better.

Once the heat was on inside we started bolting together the Launch and Recovery System (LARS), which is an aluminum overhead lift that we’ll mount two electric hoists to heft Artemis in and out of the water.

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Assembling the LARS.

Another project that’s been ongoing is preparing the fiber tether of the vehicle, which is no small task. Artemis has 15 km of millimeter thin fiberoptic tether that allows high speed data transfer. We’ll run our initial missions with a secondary tether that can take the full weight of the vehicle, but the weight and drag of a mechanical tether are impractical for full scale missions. Once we have all the systems checked out we’ll operate on the fiber alone, traveling further and further under the shelf. If we loose the tether for any reason, Artemis can make its way home on its own.

Vickie guides the fiber onto the rough spool, allowing us to quickly reel in fiber as the vehicle returns.

Vickie guides the fiber onto the rough spool, which allowing us to quickly reel in fiber as the vehicle returns.

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Operated by a sewing peddle, the fiber winder is a pretty impressive piece of custom engineering built by John that bears a slight resemblances to a loom.

Bonus timelapse- here’s us clearing all the snow out of the sea ice access. Visible above us is the completed LARS. Needless to say, none of us felt obligated to get to the gym that night. Or any time soon.

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