The Sounding Oceanographic Lagrangrian Observer Thermal RECharging--or SOLO-TREC for short--is the world's first underwater robot powered only by thermal energy. The vehicle is therefore not limited by a depleting energy source and can stay underwater for long periods of time.
SOLO-TREC was developed by researchers from NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab, Scripps Institution of Oceanography and the US Navy. The 1.7 watts of energy needed to power SOLO-TREC is derived from the temperature differences found at varying ocean depths.
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