Exploring Inaccessible Areas
Mote technology focuses on the development of versatile autonomous sensor systems for exploring inaccessible areas, where modern state-of-art technologies cannot be applied . These areas can be natural or manmade, for example, geological formations depositing heavy oil or potash or industrial infrastructures such as pipe lines and reactor tanks. Obstacles for applying high tech solutions or classical methods are caused by:
- These systems are not accessible for direct measurements;
- Electromagnetic signal has a very strong attenuation;
- Satellite- or beacon- based navigation methods cannot be used for position and time tagging of measurements.
The mote concept is based on injecting motes directly into the system of interest, where they follow the fluid dynamics and at the same time sense the environment around them and store measured data. Eventually (some) motes are extracted from the system and their data are analyzed. For successful exploration, the design of the motes should take into consideration the following requirements:
- Small size for efficient penetration of geological formations;
- Mote density matching the fluid density;
- Operating in high pressure, high temperature conditions;
- Efficient energy and overall internal resources management;
- No direct control over software and hardware
To solve the localization problem, i.e. to tag the data with sufficiently precise position of a mote, ultrasound technologies for distance measurements and for probing the environment will be studied and implemented on a mote. In application cases, where an expected retrieval probability of motes is low (< 10 %), the R&D focus is on development of methods for system information reconstruction from incomplete collected data. This will require development of motes with a kind of swarming features to enable data sharing with at least closest neighbors and, thus, accumulating a larger fraction of the system information. The development of efficient methods for system information reconstruction incorporating other information deduced from simulations and from field studies is ongoing in parallel.
Potential and Current Applications
- Exploration of underground environments (oil reservoirs, mining, geothermal fields)
- Study multiphase fluid dynamic in industrial reactors and pipelines, hydraulic structures
- Monitoring flow processes in natural ecosystems (rivers, aquifers)
- Localization methods based on ultrasound
- Methods for conventional and unconventional data analysis
- Experimental concepts to study inaccessible environments
Research and Commercial Projects
Services for Customers (in Industry and Science)
- Study flow regimes and multiphase mixtures using Xploring WiseMotesTM
- Assessing a customer task and conducting a feasibility study at minimum cost. Developing the project after a positive outcome of the feasibility.
- Motes for Environment Mapping. Elena Talnishnikh et al. Patent Pending.
- Method and System for Mapping. Elena Talnishnikh et al. Patent Pending.
- Sensor System - Mote and a Mote-system. Elena Talnishnikh et al. Patent Pending.
- Method of inserting the video mote into remote environment. Heinrich Wörtche et al. Patent Pending.