ATLAS ELEKTRONIK UK (AEUK) has been contracted by DE&S’s Mine Hunting Capability (MHC) Team to supply Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) Systems for the UK Royal Navy (RN). The £32m contract, includes delivery of 3 MHC AUV Systems comprising 9 vehicles in total along with a comprehensive training and support package to run for 3 years from delivery. This delivery to the MHC team will see AEUK providing another MCM toolbox element, alongside the in-service ARCIMS uncrewed surface vessels (USVs), with their advanced minesweeping payloads and towed minehunting sonars, enabled by AEUK’s Unmanned Vehicle (UxV) Autonomy software and sensors.
Minister for Defence Procurement, Jeremy Quin, said: “This innovative technology is a huge leap forward for the Royal Navy and will be crucial to protecting the security and safety of our personnel. Supporting wider British industry, it also reinforces our focus on ensuring the UK remains at the forefront of tackling defence threats.”
Wesley Galliver, Head of Surface Ship Systems said “We are very proud the advanced mine countermeasures technology that AEUK has invested in over the years is now being provided to the RN for their flagship Mine Counter Measures (MCM) operational evaluation programme. MCM is at the heart of our business and AEUK are delighted to enhance the RN’s autonomous systems capability.”
The MHC AUV System combines the ATLAS ELEKTRONIK GmbH medium-sized SeaCat® AUV, fitted with the latest AEUK high resolution Vision Synthetic Aperture Sonar (SAS) and the Seebyte Neptune and Military software for advanced planning and analysis. AEUK have worked with Lidan Marine to develop a remote AUV handling system for the MHC AUV project, providing a Launch and Recovery System (LARS) suitable for operation from platforms such as the RN’s ARCIMS USVs and SEA Class workboats.