The UK defense ministry has awarded Atlas Elektronik UK (AEUK) a £32 million contract for the delivery of minehunting systems for the Royal Navy.
The Mine Hunting Capability (MHC) team from the defense ministry’s defense equipment and support (DE&S) office ordered three sets of the mine countermeasures systems, comprising 9 vehicles in total.
The contract also includes a training and support package to run for 3 years from delivery.
“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 defense threats,” UK defense procurement, Jeremy Quin, said.
The MHC AUV system combines the Atlas Elektronik GmbH medium-sized SeaCat AUV, fitted with a high resolution vision synthetic aperture sonar (SAS) and the Seebyte Neptune and Military software for planning and analysis.
Supporting other autonomous assets, including the joint French/UK Maritime Mine Counter Measures (MMCM) and Combined Influence Sweep (SWEEP) systems, the MAUVs will become part of a “system of systems” that will enable the Royal Navy to search, detect and neutralize mines from a remote distance while on operations worldwide.
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.
“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 program,” Wesley Galliver, head of surface ship systems said.