ATLAS ELEKTRONIK UK press release
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.
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.
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.
Naval News comments:
The SeaCat will be part of MHC Block 1, which systems are set to be delivered in late 2022. The Franco-British Maritime Mine Counter Measures (MMCM) project entered manufacture Stage with Initial Production Contract Award in November 2020. The first demonstrator was delivered in December 2021.
While the Royal Navy has been using an ECA Group A27 AUV for the demonstration phase of MMCM (in a similar fashion to the French Navy for SLAMF), the service started seeking a new UUV platform in the summer of 2020. Several sources previously told Naval News that the A27 design was deemed too large and too heavy.