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Request for Proposal
Status: RFP is Open

Underwater Video Image Enhancement Technology

Request Number
RFP_2019_0001
Due Date
Mar 11
Program Manager
SOLUTION PROVIDER HELP DESK JAPAN:
 

Opportunity
Joint/contract development, equipment/solution supply

 

Timeline
Phase 1: Feasibility evaluation and partner selection (6 months)
Phase 2: Solution development (1–2 years)

 

Financials
Budget for technology establishment already secured
(details open to discussion based on proposals)

 

How to  Apply
  • Click on "Respond", complete the form to the extent possible, and submit along with other attachment files available. 
  • After creating your account for NineSights, your draft will be automatically saved and you can resume later from "Control Center". Please note you do not submit confidential information at this process.
  • This request for proposals in PDF format is available at "Attachments" area.

 

SOLUTION PROVIDER HELP DESK
If you have any questions or request, please feel free to contact us at: phd2@ninesigma.com 

RFP Title

 

Underwater Video Image Enhancement Technology
RFP Description

NineSigma, representing Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings, Inc. (the "Client"), seeks technology for enhancing underwater video images.

By utilizing the image enhancement technology, the Client aims at establishing robotic subsea inspection and maintenance of offshore wind farms. In particular, a real-time underwater video enhancement technology for underwater robot navigation and for target detection and a high-resolution video enhancement technology for defect detection are anticipated.

Because of a poor visibility due to water turbidity caused by planktons, suspended impurities, etc., undersea image enhancement has specific difficulties. Hence, participation of organizations who have knowledge about or experienced in enhancing subsea video image is highly welcomed.  

Key Success Criteria

Examples of video image (approx. 100MB)

https://ninesigma.co.jp/RFP/2019_0001_Produce.avi

  

Development goal

The initial goal is achieving manual navigation of underwater robot by an operator, utilizing enhanced images for target detection, robot location detection, obstacle avoidance, etc., at the same time, achieving defect detection by an operator, utilizing enhanced images. In addition to image enhancement technologies applicable to current client’s video image, proposals including methods to take clearer video images than the current level are also welcomed.

  • Real-time undersea video enhancement technology
    • Enhanced enough to utilize processed image data by an operator for target detection (e.g., determining whether the underwater robot approaches an intended inspection site), for robot navigation, etc.
    • Processing time: approximate 1 sec. or less
  • High-resolution video enhancement technology
    • Enhanced enough to utilize processed image data for defect detection (e.g., rust, crack, peeling paint in the order of millimeters at minimum) by operator. Real-time enhancement technology is not required, but acquiring enough information to determine whether this single investigation is sufficient for defect detection of target area would be desired.
Possible Approaches

Anticipated solutions include but are not limited to following approaches:
1. Application

  • Image processing, etc.

2. Hardware

  • Device to enhance video signals transferred from a camera
  • Camera capable of taking clearer video images
  • Device to automatically create enhanced image file from stored video image.

3. Video shooting techniques to remove/reduce underwater turbidity.

  • Adjustment of the position of camera/light and the illuminance level of light
Items to be Submitted

Background

Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings, Inc. is considering the utilization of underwater robots to inspect subsea equipment of an offshore wind power generation system and check if marine creatures attach to the equipment and fish swarms around it. Filmed video images are important to operate an underwater robot and check an inspection site. With conventional technology, however, low light intensity and susceptibility to turbidity caused by planktons, suspended impurities, etc. in the sea make visibility insufficient at present.

Automation of infrastructure maintenance is now under consideration all over the world because of decreasing working population and for ensuring safety in operators. Hence, as an element of technology to automate infrastructure maintenance, video and images enhancement technology is examined in many ways. In addition, the maintenance of ships and bridges, search of remainders in the bottom of the sea/lakes, and periodical observation of underwater environment by robots/cameras are already conducted all over the world. In recent years, technology advancement is expected in the area of enhancing underwater video. Believing that promising approaches would exist somewhere in the world, the Client has issued this open request.

 

Anticipated Project Process

Submission proposal via NineSights along with URLs; uploading  enhancement results of sample video image or clear video image/data sample shot by proposed technology would be appreciated.

(For uploading data, utilization of https://streamable.com/ application is preferable.)

Sample video Image URL (approx. 100MB): 

https://ninesigma.co.jp/RFP/2019_0001_Produce.avi

After the submission due date, the client will review all submitted proposals. NineSigma will send the review results to each proposer 6-8 weeks after the due date. The client possibly asks clarifying questions before selecting the most suitable candidates for collaboration. The client will select best candidates through evaluations. During the selection process, the client may execute NDA with selected respondents, seek further information disclosure, and discuss specific development targets or potential opportunities.

The client will execute necessary agreements with the selected respondents and move to the advanced development phase. Specifics of any collaboration will be determined through consultation with the concerned parties.

 

Notes on Response

Proposal shall have clear points and should not include confidential information. Supplemental files may be submitted in addition to the proposal.

 

Response evaluation

The client will evaluate all responses with the following criteria.

  • Overall scientific and technical merit
  • Approach to proof of concept or performance
  • Economic potential of concept
  • Realism of the proposed plan (action items, timeline, roles, deliverables, cost estimation)
  • Potential for proprietary position
  • Respondents’ capability and related experiences
Preferred Collaboration Types
Area of Interest