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Slocum Glider
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Origins of Glider Concept:
  • "TRACING A EUREKA MOMENT" by Peter Donaldson. Reprinted with permission from Unmanned Verhicles Material Safety Data Sheet PDF
  • Slocum Glider: Design and 1991 Field Trials by Webb Research Corporation and Paul Simonetti Material Safety Data Sheet PDF
  • WHOI Memo 4-20-78 "Some advantages of SOFAR floats that move under their own power" Material Safety Data Sheet PDF
  • Glider - History of the Slocum Mission(see article)

» View Slocum Glider data sheet

» View Slocum Hybrid Glider data sheet

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Slocum Glider
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Conceived by Douglas C. Webb and supported by Henry Stommel and others, the class of Slocum Gliders is named after Joshua Slocum, the first man to single-handedly sail around the world.

The Slocum Glider is a uniquely mobile network component capable of moving to specific locations and depths and occupying controlled spatial and temporal grids. Driven in a sawtooth vertical profile by variable buoyancy, the glider moves both horizontally and vertically.

The long-range and duration capabilities of Slocum gliders make them ideally suited for subsurface sampling at the regional scale. Carrying a wide variety of sensors, they can be programmed to patrol for weeks at a time, surfacing to transmit their data to shore while downloading new instructions at regular intervals, realizing a substantial cost savings compared to traditional surface ships.

The small relative cost and the ability to operate multiple vehicles with minimal personnel and infrastructure will enable small fleets of gliders to study and map the dynamic (temporal and spatial) features of subsurface coastal waters around the clock and around the calendar.

  • Electric Glider - Versatile, maneuverable, and powered with alkaline batteries.
  • Thermal Glider - Long range and endurance using environmental energy (Thermal Engine).