The Drone Revolution Underwater

Hydrus is an autonomous drone that makes underwater surveying easy and affordable.


The Future of Underwater Drones

Join Peter Baker and Morgan McDermont from Advanced Navigation to learn how Hydrus is disrupting the Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) industry. The drone revolution is happening, in the deep! Our hosts take you through the whole product journey, from inspiration and design philosophy to technical challenges and innovative capabilities.

WEBINAR | THe Future Of Underwater Drones

Peek under the hood

Hydrus | Underwater Drone Technology
4K 60 FPS Camera
Wireless charging
Smart lighting system
Hubless thrusters
AI Powered navigation system
E-ink screen
USBL positioning & Acoustic modem
Forward facing sonar

Key Numbers


Depth Rating


Video Resolution





Truly Autonomous

Hydrus takes the drone revolution underwater, with the most advanced navigation and communication systems of any subsea vehicle. It contains a DVL, USBL, INS, acoustic and optical modem, all tightly integrated. This enables highly reliable, fully autonomous underwater missions at your fingertips. It also provides obstacle detection and collision avoidance.

Stunning Imagery

Hydrus produces stunning imagery, even in challenging low light and turbid conditions. Through its innovative combination of a 4K camera, dynamic lighting and AI image processing, Hydrus delivers high quality georeferenced footage. The high 60 frames per second allows fast movements to be captured and enhances machine vision capability, allowing for AI classification and analysis to be performed onboard. Hydrus can create 3D RGB point clouds by combining imagery with its sonar and navigation data.

Small and Affordable

Hydrus condenses its advanced features into one of the smallest, and most affordable autonomous underwater vehicles on the market. Its fully encapsulated polymer construction provides best-in-class reliability with minimal maintenance.

Intuitive Mission Control

Hydrus takes complex mission design out of the expert domain and into the hands of anyone that needs underwater data. It features an intuitive point and click 3D map interface that makes creating complex missions simple and allows untrained operators to use the system out of the box. Mission execution utilises AI for reliable navigation and image quality control.

Open Platform

Hydrus is able to integrate your custom software as a payload, offering full access to the camera, sensors, navigation, modems and control. The powerful and open architecture is ideal for machine vision and AI applications.

And more incredible features

AI-Enhanced INS

Fusion of all navigation and positioning data with Advanced Navigations’ revolutionary INS algorithm.

USBL Positioning

Absolute positioning and time synchronisation available when paired with Subsonus USBL.

DVL Transducers

Avoid obstacles, set camera focal length, and measure vehicle velocity with high-frequency acoustics.

High Speed Communication

Transfer high speed and secure data via Wi-Fi above the water, and optical modem underwater.

4K 60 FPS Camera

Simultaneous cinema grade video and still images. Optimised for low light and computer vision applications.

Acoustic Modem

Long-range acoustic communications and data transfer enable supervised autonomy.

Hubless Thrusters

Hubless thrusters maintain fine control authority and avoid entanglement of objects. Impellers are swappable for ease of maintenance.

Smart Lighting

AI image analysis dynamically adjusts the lighting to illuminate the subject while minimising backscatter in turbid water.

Connectorless Design

Fully sealed, connectorless body design reduces maintenance and removes the chance of water ingress.

Wireless Charging

Safe, reliable and fast charging of Hydrus using industry-standard Qi protocol, even underwater.

E-ink Screen

Pressure tolerant, ultra low power E-ink screen for concise and clear human-machine interface.

One solution. Endless applications.

Navigation | Underwater Positioning
Autonomous Vehicle Navigation System
Hydrus | Future of Underwater Drones

Reef Monitoring

Hydrus unique thruster configuration and small size allow it to maneuver around complex reef structures in ways no other underwater vehicle can.
The unique manoeuvrability, combined with ultra high definition image capture makes it ideal for AI analysis and photogrammetry. By removing the need for divers and being deployed and recovered by a single person, Hydrus cuts operating costs, allowing monitoring surveys to be performed at higher frequencies, giving greater resolution to complex datasets.

Environmental Mapping

The tight integration of the imaging and navigation systems allows Hydrus to capture high-resolution seabed images that are natively georeferenced. They can be transferred directly into industry-standard software for GIS applications, mosaicing, and photogrammetry. Hydrus missions are able to be saved and re-shot as frequently as required, offering incredibly repeatable images at whatever time spacing the user demands. View 3D model.

HYDRUS | Underwater Navigation System | Autonomous Navigation System
Underwater Navigation System | Autonomous Navigation System | HYDRUS
Autonomous Underwater Vehicle | Underwater Navigation System

Object Localisation and Classification

Hydrus is the only AUV on the market to truly offer rapid deployment capability, given its flight safe status, and single-person deployment ability. This allows users to get Hydrus where it is needed quickly, safely and cost-effectively. Once in location, the open platform architecture allows users to run their own software payloads onboard, with direct access to the imaging data, sensor data, and navigation system. The processing capability of Hydrus is optimised for intensive AI operations such as machine vision, allowing for tasks such as object localisation and classification to be performed rapidly.


Max. Transit Speed
2 knots
Max. Survey Speed
1.5 knots
2 km
Depth Rating
300 m, 1,000 m
484 x 264 x 216 mm
6.7 kg
Video Resolution
4K @ 60 FPS
20,000 Lumen


Datasheet (PDF)
Reference Manual (Online)
Reference Manual (PDF)
24 Apr 2024 - V1.2


Hydrus Firmware

The latest firmware for all Hydrus hardware versions. This can be loaded onto Hydrus using the web browser interface. If using Hydrus with a Subsonus unit, Subsonus must be running v3.50 or later.

15 Apr 2024 – V1.30

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