JFD’s SEAL Carrier is an 8-man swimmer delivery vehicle which facilitates the insertion and extraction of Special Operations forces and equipment. In this role, their use allows for greater stand-off from surface ships and submarines. SEAL Carrier vehicles transit at speeds of up to 30 kts on the surface thanks to an on board diesel engine and water jet. Submerged propulsion is delivered by thrusters and powered by advanced Lithium Polymer batteries.
In addition to divers and their personal equipment, SEAL Carrier accommodate additional mission equipment such as sensor and radio equipment, ammunition and explosives, survival equipment and supplies. For operations requiring extended range, the craft can carry additional fuel stored in a separate fuel tank or additional battery packs.
Example applications for a SEAL Carrier include:
Delivery of 6-man combat team
Host platform for autonomous underwater vehicles
Remotely operated weapons platform
Harbour patrol vessel
Rapid-response anti-piracy craft
Mine countermeasure operations
A built in breathing system adds extra safety for the divers and enables an extended underwater range
Several quick mounts for a variety of weapon systems transforms the craft in to a combat craft
On board sensors and navigation systems work together to provide safe transit and accurate positioning day and night, above or below the surface of the water, regardless of vehicle speed or environmental conditions.
As illustrated in the Concept of Operation, SEAL Carrier operates in three different modes, offering an ideal balance between range, endurance and mission ﬂexibility. SEAL Carrier’s two propulsion systems are designed to provide optimum performance, whether travelling at speed on the surface or quietly whilst fully submerged.
In surface mode, SEAL Carrier is propelled by a water-cooled, 345 horse power diesel engine coupled with a Rolls Royce water jet. Together they allow for perfect manoeuvrability. The nozzle of the water jet is controlled hydraulically and is independent of the other hydraulic systems onboard. A reversing gear is supplied. Diesel fuel is contained within a 360 litre bag located forward of the engine compartment. A second, additional fuel bag may be fitted to provide SEAL Carrier with increased range of up to 300 nautical miles.
To reduce the visible, accoustic and radar signature of SEAL Carrier, the vehicle can be operated in semi-submerged mode. In this mode, the diesel engine and water-jet remain the propulsion system of choice and can propel the craft at sprint speeds of up to six knots. The vehicle’s typical cruise speed in this mode is four knots. The electrical propulsion system – typically reserved for use in submerged mode – made be used if required. Air intake is achieved via a hydraulically actuated snorkel. The navigator may raise the height of the snorkel by up to a meter so as to avoid water ingress. Sensors within the snorkel seal the engine capsule and prevent the diesel engine from starting if the presence of water is detected within the air inlet system. When not in use, and in surface mode, the snorkel sits flush to the superstructure.
The surface propulsion system is contained within a stainless steel casing maintained at a constant pressure. This allows SEAL Carrier to transition into submerged mode seamlessly. Whilst operating in surface- and semi-submerged modes, the diesel engine and onboard generator charge the lithium polymer batteries. In submerged mode these batteries deliver power to two electric thrusters installed at the vehicle’s transom. This propulsion system affords SEAL Carrier a submerged range of 15 nautical miles at a speed of up to five knots. SEAL Carrier’s typical cruise speed in submerged mode is three knots. Additional battery packs may be installed to provide twice the range and endurance in fully-submerged mode.
JFD is the world leading underwater capability provider, serving the commercial and defence markets with innovative diving, submarine and hyperbaric rescue, technical solutions and services. Operating worldwide, the company is the world’s leading provider of submarine rescue capability and an established provider of submarine escape training. The company is at the forefront of Hyperbaric Rescue, along with being the leading supplier of commercial and defence diving equipment and saturation diving systems to the commercial industry.
JFD was created in 2014 through the merger of James Fisher Defence and Divex. In 2015 JFD acquired the National Hyperbaric Centre to further boost the services offered to its customers. In 2016 LEXMAR was acquired to enhance the capability and offering within JFD’s diving capability and suite of saturation diving systems. JFD is part of the James Fisher & Sons plc.