Yamaha Motor to Provide Engineer for Seabed Race

IWATA, May 10, 2017 - Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. (Tokyo: 7272) announced today that it has sent an engineer to “Team KUROSHIO”- a collaboration team bringing together Japanese industry, academia, and government - which is taking on the challenge of the “Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE” 4,000m deep-seabed exploration race. To provide the best possible support for the team, Yamaha Motor conducted an open in-house recruitment and screening program to select a young engineer passionate about contributing to this bold venture.

Yamaha Motor is engaging in this collaborative research with the objectives of (1) improving internal motivation through grand challenges, (2) acquiring knowledge related to marine technology/business and building networks, and (3) embodying the brand slogan “Revs your Heart.” At the same time, Yamaha Motor aims to contribute to the team through technological development leveraging its marine business and unmanned systems business, logistics (miniaturization of equipment and efficient packaging), knowledge of race management gained through motor sports activities, and so on.

The “Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE” is an international seabed exploration competition sponsored by the XPRIZE Foundation in the United States. It is a US$7 million international race based on the challenge of achieving accuracy and speed in 3D mapping of the 4,000m-depth class of wide areas of seabed using autonomous underwater vehicles. A total of 32 teams from 13 countries have entered the competition, of which the results will be announced in December 2018 after examination of the technical proposals and two stages of seabed exploration testing.

“Team KUROSHIO” is a team created by collaboration bringing together Japanese industry, academia, and government. The team is principally formed by young researchers from the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC), the University of Tokyo Institute of Industrial Science, the Kyushu Institute of Technology, the National Institute of Maritime, Port and Aviation Technology, etc., as well as specialists in marine technology from domestic research institutions and private companies. The creation of this team and its entry into the competition stakes Japan’s prestige as a maritime nation.

*AUV (Autonomous Underwater Vehicles) = Incorporates marine photonics, seabed cable systems, and geographical information systems, etc.