Hello All,

I work for a water management organization here in MN and am very intrigued by the concept of OpenROV as it may relate to the enhancement of our fieldwork. I am confident I can build this but had a couple questions pertaining to equipment needed in addition to the kit.

1. Will I need to buy a controller (xbox, play station style, etc.)?

2. Does the tether tie directly into your laptop?

3. If a browser is required, would a mobile hotspot be required? Has anyone hooked this up to an Ipad?

I am sure you will gain from the nature of my questions that I may not be the most tech savy, so any additional basic information that you folks could provide would be greatly appreciated!




Hey Charlie,

Some quick answers to your questions-

1. If you get some sort of USB gamepad controller, you can plug it into your laptop and use it to control the ROV, but if you don't want to use one (or don't have one) you can also just control the ROV using your computer's keyboard. The nice thing about using a gamepad controller is that it gives you proportional throttle control.

2. The tether plugs into a small box (which you build as part of the kit) called a Topside Adapter. This box converts the twisted pair tether back into regular Ethernet that can be plugged into the Ethernet port on your computer. The box also needs to be powered by something, so we've made a plug that supplies voltage to the topside adapter from a USB port.

3. If you have a wireless router, you can plug the ROV (via the Topside Adapter) into that and log into your ROV wirelessly. There is currently a little bit of work being done to make OpenROV Cockpit (the interface for the ROV that you pull up through your web browser) work with keyboard-less devises like smartphones and tablets, but that's still a work in progress.

We're always looking for help with development, so even if you're not super tech savy, we'll be very interested to hear any ideas you have for how we can make OpenROV a better tool for field work.

It sounds like you're doing some pretty cool stuff- any job that involves being out and about is the right kind of job to have!

I hope this helps,



As Charile I've been reading and checking the ROV documentation for having a clear idea before seriously thinking about buying a kit.

Checking kit pics, there is a board named "openROV control board", togheder with the beaglebone, which is not included in the V2.5 matherials list.

I'm confused about it. Is, or is not this board required for the V2.5 version of OpenROV ?

If yes, what board is it ? Is it specially designed and builded for OpenROV ? Or is it a commercial one ?

As you may have deduced from all my posts in the forum and blog, I'm interested on improving the "physical" performance of the ROV, and will surely use the whole electronics but only a little part of ... lets say, the "submergible". Thats why I want to have a clear understanding of that part before starting the works.



Thanks for the replies. Eric, in your experience what type of wireless router would be acceptable? What type of monthly cost would be associated with this? Trying to get the stupid questions out of the way!


Question solved.




There are no specific wireless routers that I'd recommend- I think just about any WiFi router that has an Ethernet plug and WiFi should work. There are some routers that take 12 power which is more convenient for powering them off of battery if you're not near a wall outlet.

Routers are devises you can buy from a store which should have any monthly cost.