Over the years, the DARPA Challenges in the United States have galvanized interest in autonomous cars, making them a real possibility in the mind of the public, but autonomous and unmanned vehicles have been increasingly employed in many roles on land, in the water, and in the air. Military applications have received a great deal of attention, with weaponized unmanned aircraft (drones) being the most prominent. However, unmanned vehicles with varying degrees of autonomy already have many civilian applications. Some of these are quite familiar (such as the Roomba autonomous vacuum cleaner), while others remain largely out of the public eye (such as autonomous farm equipment). Additional applications and more capable vehicles are rapidly coming to the markets in the years ahead. This book examines a number of economically important areas in which unmanned and autonomous vehicles, also understood here as autonomous technologies, are already used or soon will be.
This book presents a theoretical treatment, as well as a summary of practical methods of computation, of the forces and moments that act on marine craft. Its aim is to provide the tools necessary for the prediction or simulation of craft motions in calm water and in waves. In addition to developing the required equations, the author gives relations that permit at least approximate evaluation of the coefficients so that useful results can be obtained. The approach begins with the equations of motion for rigid bodies, relative to fixed- and moving-coordinate systems; then, the hydrodynamic forces are examined, starting with hydrostatics and progressing to the forces on a moving vehicle in calm water and (after a review of water-wave theory) in waves. Several detailed examples are presented, including calculations of hydrostatics, horizontal- and vertical-plane directional stability, and wave-induced motions.