Available Technology


The depthimeter comprises a heave sensor, a mean path compensator and a combiner. The mean path compensator comprises a ranging device which measures the instantaneous distance of the vehicle from a fixed point on the vehicle to ocean surface as a function of time; a range compensator to compensate for signal dropouts in the ranging devices data, for sensor offset angle, and vehicle pitch and roll, thereby providing a signal that contains the vehicles vertical motion and the vertical motion of the sea surface. A low-pass filter within the mean path compensator eliminates the components of the resulting signal due to the motion of the sea surface and the high frequency components of the vehicle's vertical motion, thereby producing a signal that is the mean path of the vehicle, referenced to mean sea level. The combiner merges the mean path signal from the mean path compensator and a heave signal generated by the heave sensor to generate a signal that is a surface vehicle's draft relative to mean sea level or a submerged vehicle's depth relative to mean sea level. This signal is also the vehicle's vertical displacement with time relative to mean sea level.

Michael M. Harris

Brian S. Bourgeois

Andrew B. Martinez

Patent Number: 
Patent Issue Date: 
April 13, 2001
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