A Practical Comparison of GEO and LEO Satellite Communication Systems for Remote Presence Control of an ROV
This paper describes an ROV remote presence control exercise conducted over both Geostationary Orbit (GEO) and Low Earth Orbit (LEO) Satellite Communications links. Its purpose was to investigate and compare the reliability, latency and available bandwidth provided by both systems for the chosen application. The ROV used is operated by the Centre for Robotics and Intelligent Systems (CRIS), University of Limerick, Ireland. It was deployed in December 2022 from the Irish Marine Institute's Research Vessel (RV) 'Tom Crean', off the south coast of Ireland and was controlled by a PC running OceanRINGS smart software control system. The GEO Satellite Communications link used was the vessel's VSAT system, and the electronic phased array antenna, router and mobile phone hotspot provided the link to the Starlink LEO constellation. A remote operator located in Co. Sligo, Ireland, accessed the OceanRINGS control PC across a TeamViewer link. Upload and Download connection speeds and Latencies between the OceanRINGS PC and onshore servers were recorded. A series of exercises were then performed, remotely altering the heading and depth of the ROV. Wireshark network protocol analyser was used to capture packet data from the network interfaces throughout the exercises. On analysis, it was found that the use of the LEO satellite link significantly reduced latency when compared to the GEO link, while transfer speeds increased by a factor of 13.78 (download) and 7.71 (upload). The exercise demonstrated that both satellite connections could facilitate high-level remote presence control of the ROV.
PublicationOCEANS 2023, pp.1-10
Other Funding informationThis project (Grant-Aid Agreement No. PDOC/19/18/01) is carried out with the support of the Marine Institute under the Marine Research Programme funded by the Irish Government, co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). Research survey (TC22017) is supported by the Marine Institute and is funded under the Marine Research Programme by the Government of Ireland.
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