The ALBAC, a prototype of shuttle type autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) which was designed and constructed for oceanographic measurement of water column on the way and from seabed. The ALBAC mainly consists of a body of a cylindrical pressure hull and a pair of wings which provide large lift force.By this mean, the ALBAC can move horizontally without consuming energy of batteries by gliding up to 20 degrees down from the horizontal plane. Major equipment including control actuators are installed in one cylindrical pressure hull, which has a 3-liter dry pay load space for scientific measurement devices. To control the attitude and trajectory, an actuator system displaces the location of the center of gravity longitudinally and laterally by moving a weight.
Since these apparatuses are not exposed to the sea water, the actuators are not effected by environment resulting in significantly high reliability. To ensure the total system performance, sea trials were conducted at the Suruga Bay of Japan and longitudinal and lateral motions of the vehicle were measured.