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BlueROV2 integration

Introduction

The revised Water Linked Underwater GPS is designed with a connection interface that has power-line communication (PLC) capabilities through the BlueROV2 Integration Kit.

The Water Linked BlueROV2 Integration Kit provides the necessary components to seamlessly connect the BlueROV2 and the Underwater GPS.

This page specifically covers using the BlueROV2 Integration Kit to connect the Underwater GPS with the BlueRobotics BlueROV2.

Parts and tools

The Locator-A1 and Locator-U1 are the only Locators that will work together with the BlueROV2 Integration Kit as the Locator bulkhead on the Underwater GPS will be altered and used for connection to the BlueROV2.

You will need

bluerov2_front

hex_set

penetrator_wrench

blurerov2_integration_kit

You will also need:

  • #1 Phillips head screwdriver

Optional:

  • Bottle of treadlocker
  • Soldering iron

Installing the Locator-A1 on the BlueROV2

You will need to install the Locator-A1 on the BlueROV2 using components from the BlueROV2 Integration Kit. The Locator will use one of the spare cable penetrations in the back of the BlueROV2 and will connect to the spare green and white twisted pair in the tether.

Note

The Locator-A1 requires a mounting bracket to attach it to the BlueROV2. You can find a 3D model of a suitable mounting bracket here which you can 3D print as is, or modify to your needs. Altenativly you can simply attach the Locator-A1 to the BlueROV2 using zip ties. Just make sure the Locator-A1 has free line-of-sight towards the Receivers near the surface.

Removing a blank penetrator

To remove a blank penetrator from your BlueROV2, you will need the following tools:

  • 2.5 mm hex driver
  • #1 Phillips head screwdriver
  • Penetrator wrench

To ensure your ROV is completely powered off, please remove the battery completely from the 3” enclosure and place to the side.

bluerov2-remove-battery

Remove the fairings and buoyancy blocks by removing the self-tapping screws that hold the fairings to the frame.

bluerov2-remove-fairings

Remove the 4” electronics enclosure from the ROV by removing the M3x16 screws that mount the enclosure to the ROV cradle.

bluerov2-remove-electronic

Remove the Vent Plug from the Vent Penetrator Bolt on the electronics enclosure. Remove the 4″ tube and forward dome assembly from the rear end cap.

bluerov2-remove-vent

Remove the blank penetrator as pictured from the 4” End Cap with the penetrator wrench that came with the BlueROV2 kit.

bluerov2-end-cap-remove

Install Locator-A1 penetrator

To install Locator-A1 into the end cap, you will need the following parts and tools:

  • Locator-A1 with pre-installed cable penetrator
  • Penetrator Nut (Black)
  • Penetrator O-ring
  • Silicone Grease – 10g Tube
  • Isopropyl Alcohol Wipe
  • Penetrator wrench

Wipe the exterior surface of the electronics enclosure end cap clean with isopropyl alcohol or isopropyl alcohol wipes, and make sure it is free of any particles in the areas where the penetrator O-ring will sit.

Remove the O-ring from the bag and apply silicone grease to it.

bluerov2-grease-o-ring

Install the O-ring onto the Locator-A1 cable penetrator. Install the Locator-A1 cable penetrator on to the end cap in the hole you previously removed the blank penetrator from. Tighten to finger tight, then use the provided wrench to tighten it an additional ~1/16 of a turn. If you can’t loosen it with your fingers, it is tight enough.

bluerov2-end-cap-A1

Using the pre-crimped header pin connector on the Locator-A1, connect the Locator wires (green/white) to a spare twisted pair of the tether (green/white).

Reasemble BlueROV2 electronics enclosure

To reassemble your BlueROV2 Electronics Enclosure, you will need the following parts and tools:

  • 4 x M3x16 screws that were placed off to the side during disassembly
  • Silicone Grease – 10g Tube
  • 2.5 mm hex driver

Reinstall 4” Watertight Enclosure onto ROV with the following steps:

Apply silicone grease to the two radial O-rings on the O-Ring Flange (4” Series) that is attached to the Electronics Tray then install the Watertight Enclosure (4” Series) with installed Dome End Cap to the O-Ring Flange (4” Series).

Mount the Electronics Enclosure to the frame using the M3x16 screws so that the dome is on the same side as the front center panels (the center panels without the 3 large holes). Install the M3x16 screws through the clips and into the Enclosure Cradle (4” Series). It is easier to install these screws if the clips are not fully tightened until all screws are through the clips and threading into the Enclosure Cradle (4” Series). This allows clips to rotate so you can find the threaded hole in the Enclosure Cradle (4” Series) easily.

bluerov2-remove-electronic

Mounting the Locator-A1 to the BlueROV2 frame

To mount the Locator-A1 to the BlueROV2 frame, you will need the following parts and tools:

  • Aluminum Locator-A1 mounting bracket (2 halves)4 x M3x16 socket head cap screws (Not included)
  • 2 x M5x12 button head cap screws
  • 2.5 mm hex driver
  • 3 mm hex driver
  • (Optional) Bottle of threadlocker

Route the Locator to one side of the ROV.

Attach the aluminum mounting bracket to the Locator-A1 using the M3x16 socket head screws. (Optional) add threadlocker to screw threads before securing.

Secure the mounting bracket to the existing holes on the ROV frame.

Modifications inside Underwater GPS housing

Connecting ethernet cable

To connect ethernet from the Interface Electronics board to the Master Electronics board, you will need the following part:

  • Ethernet cable (included in the BlueROV2 Integration Kit)

Locate the ethernet ports on the Interface Electronics board and the Master Electronics board.

topside-ethernet-ports

Connect the included ethernet cable to the two ports.

topside-ethernet-cable

Installing the PLC module

To install the PLC module to the Interface Electronics board, you will need the following part:

  • LX200V30 PLC Homeplug module with press-fit standoffs(included in the BlueROV2 Integration Kit)

Locate the socket for the Homeplug module on the Interface board.

topside-plc-socket

Press the PLC module into the socket, making sure that the press-fit standoffs latch into the holes in the Interface Electronics board.

topside-plc-standoffs

Interface Electronics modification (Optional)

Warning

Skipping this step leaves a regulated 12V power source from the Underwater GPS on the PLC lines (pins 1 (GND) and 2 (12V) on the Locator bulkhead). Connecting non-isolated equipment to the PLC lines may damage the Underwater GPS or any external equipment.

The Interface Electronics board in the Underwater GPS housing comes with the resistors R2 and R3 attached. These put GND on pin 1 and 12V on pin 2 of the bulkhead connector with the label “Locator”. The configuration of the FXTI, BlueROV2 and the Locator-A1 as presented in this guide is not affected by leaving these resistors on the board. In any other configuration, you should assess whether or not removing R2 and R3 is necessary for safe operation.

topside-interface-resistors

Modifications to FXTI

The connections made inside the FXTI will connect the ROV, Topside Computer, and Water Linked systems to each other. Here’s a high level diagram of what that will look like:

topside-fxti_connection_diagram

To enable connection between the Underwater GPS and the FXTI, you need the following parts and tools:

  • Bulkhead wire assembly (included in the BlueROV2 Integration Kit)
  • Brown/white jumper lead (included in the BlueROV2 Integration Kit)
  • 2 mm hex driver

Unscrew the bulkhead panel from the FXTI and remove one of the black plastic plugs from one of the auxiliary ports.

fxti-remove-plug

Thread the FXTI Binder pigtail wire assembly into the open port and secure in place with the included bulkhead nut.

fxti-add-bulkhead

Connect the blue and white wire pair into the FXTI Tether Connection PCB matching the orientation of the pre-installed blue and white wire connections.

fxti-connect-plc

Connect the green and green/white Locator-A1 wire pair into the brown and brown/white pair on the Binder connector pigtail with the included female-to-female adapter.

fxti-connect-locator-a1

Reassemble the FXTI box.

fxti-final

ArduSub Companion software update

To work properly, the Water Linked UGPS system requires ArduSub Companion image version 0.0.21 or newer and the most recent stable release of QGroundControl for your operating system. If your Companion image is out of date, please follow the BlueROV2 Software Update procedures.

Software setup

Configure the Water Linked system with a static IP address of 192.168.2.94 according to the Network section of the Water Linked Documentation.

Connect the topside computer to the FXTI. Connect the BlueROV2 to the FXTI and power the BlueROV2 normally.

Connect the FXTI to the Water Linked Box using the 3m deck extension cable from the BlueROV2 Integration Kit.

Follow the Quickstart from the Water Linked Documentation for:

  • Powering the Water Linked box.
  • Calibrating the IMU.
  • Deploying receivers.
  • Making Receiver-D1 connections to the box.

To configure the receiver location Water Linked Underwater GPS system, navigate to http://192.168.2.94/#/receivers in your browser. Please refer to the Receivers section for further information on configuration.

Power on the BlueROV2 and dive so the Locator is submerged a few inches below the surface.

If everything is operating correctly, you should now find an ROV position on the map in QGroundControl. The ROV position is indicated by a BlueROV2 image. The position of the surface vessel or Water Linked Master Electronics housing is indicated by a red arrow. The small ‘H’ icon indicates the ‘home position’, the location of the ROV’s first GPS lock.

qgc-display

Troubleshooting

No External Depth error

If the error message No external depth received. Is it being sent correctly? is displayed in the UGPS UI, then conduct the following:

  1. Ensure you are using the latest versions of ArduSub Companion and QGroundControl: Update Software
  2. In the Companion Web Interface, go to the MAVProxy page: http://192.168.2.2:2770/mavproxy
  3. Click on the “Restore Default Options” button.
  4. Power cycle the BlueROV2.

Water Linked software update

Check the Water Linked system for available software updates. You can check the Underwater GPS software version at 192.168.2.94/#/about. The update process is documented in the Software Update section.