Trident FAQ

How do I control Trident?

Trident can be controlled with a modern Android phone or tablet running Android 5.1 or later using the OpenROV App (not available on IOS at this time). We also offer a dedicated controller we recommend.

What are the requirements to run the OpenROV Cockpit app?

  • Minimum System Requirements:
  • RAM: At least 2GB
  • CPU: At least a Quad-core 1.3Ghz
  • Android 5.1 and higher, though 6.1+ or 7.0+ are ideal.
  • Supports 802.11n WiFi protocol.
  • Nice-to-have features:
  • At least 7" screen, 720p resolution
  • Good screen/backlight brightness
  • Dual-band WiFi (2.4Ghz or 5Ghz)
  • WiFi MIMO support.
  • Has built-in GPS
  • Long battery life

What comes with Trident?

  • Your Trident will come with everything you need to use Trident with your own Android device:
  • Cardboard carrying case
  • 25m neutrally buoyant tether
  • 25m tether spool
  • Topside WiFi module
  • 120V-240V wall charger
  • Trim weights for use in saltwater
  • Tail strap for tether management
  • Trident quick-start guide

Do I need WIFI to use Trident? What if I don't have cell service?

The Trident Topside creates its own WiFi network to send video and control signals between Trident and your device. You only need internet access to update your software or upload your videos.

When is my Trident going to ship?

Trident will usually ship within 3 business days of the order being placed.

If I am shipping outside the U.S., what import taxes and duties do I need to pay?

Duties and taxes are required for importing goods into most countries. Every country has its own set of rules, taxes, and duties. Before ordering you should be aware of the possible charges. There are a few online calculators that can help you estimate your total landed cost but they are not guaranteed to be accurate. We recommend this calculator to get an idea of the costs that you will incur. The harmonization code for Trident is 8525.80.5050. In some instances your country may prefer a different numbering scheme for the last four digits, so if you are having trouble with the first code, try 8525.80.0000.

Is there volume pricing?

For companies, commercial enterprises, and schools we can make arrangements for volume pricing. Please send an email to sales@sofarocean.com to let us know what you're thinking.

What about being a dealer or reseller?

We don’t have an official policy regarding distribution or reselling yet, but we are gathering a list of interested companies to reach out to when the time is right. If you are interested in discussing an opportunity, please email sales@sofarocean.com to start the conversation.

What should I do if my Trident experiences water inside it’s hull?

If you suspect damage (or water inside), do not use or charge your Trident. Extra care is needed to store and transport potentially damaged lithium batteries. Place Trident safely in a cool, dry place away from combustible materials and contact support.

How does streaming and recording with Trident work? What are the camera specifications?

The camera films in both 1080p and 720p at 30 frames per second simultaneously in MP4 format. The 1080p stream records direction to Trident’s onboard memory. The 720p video streams to the tablet along with telemetry data for the pilot to see live. It is recorded locally on the tablet. Both can be toggled on and off independently in the settings to fit your needs and available storage. 

How adequate is the built-in LED lighting? Can additional lights be attached?

Trident has 2 banks of 3 LEDs with both spot and flood focusing. The combination has an output of  360 true lumens at a warm 4000k. These are sufficient for many applications but for some applications, especially those in very clear water, external lighting can help. It's easy to use adhesive mounts or Trident’s hardpoints to attach commercially available scuba diving torches.

For an example of Trident using only its lights, check out our video from the Galapagos at night-time and 90 meters deep.

In situations where underwater currents exist, is there any way to stabilize Trident against the current (similar to the way aerial drones can remain in one place against the wind)?

Trident has active stabilization. This works for adjusting pitch, yaw, and depth hold to compensate for external forces like current and tether drag. For position keeping there is no way for the Trident to know where it is at any given time in relation to an absolute position. Aerial drones take advantage of GPS, which does not penetrate water, for this ability.

What sensors or other information is available to the pilot?

The pilot’s screen has heading (compass degree), depth, temperature, and time, pitch angle, remaining battery, and remaining storage for video as well as a few other indicators (lights on / speed setting).

How long do the batteries last in typical operation? Can batteries be quickly swapped out? How long does a full battery recharge take?

Power is stored internally in a set of Lithium batteries. These batteries are 95Wh so you can ship or travel with Trident without problems. They last 3 hours when you are running all the motors continuously and using the lights. They can last up longer (up to 6 hours or more) if you aren't driving very much and are just observing. The batteries are not removable. It takes about 3 hours to charge from 10% to 90%. The battery chemistry is designed for lots of cycles so you shouldn't lose any noticeable capacity for the lifetime of the vehicle. A 3 hour charge and 3 hour discharge means 2 Tridents can offer nearly continuous use if desired.

How do the props handle fouling or getting tangled in seagrass? Are they user-serviceable or user-replaceable components?

The motors and props can be replaced with simple tools and in the field. We can provide guidance and the necessary components if this is needed. Usually fouling, even when significant, does not damage the motors or props.

Can the tether be used for recovering Trident? Is it delicate?

The Trident tether is far from delicate. It has a Kevlar reinforcement member that gives it a working strength of 175 lbs, so you can really pull on it hard if needed. It’s abrasion-resistant as well. 


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