UV - Unmanned Vehicles

ECA Group unveils A18-M AUV for MCM

2nd March 2018 - 09:30 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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ECA Group has introduced a new mid-size autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV), A18-M, for mine counter measure (MCM) operations, the company announced on 26 February.

The A18-M is designed for mine detection in water depths up to 300 metres. It can operate in close vicinity of smart mines without triggering them.

The A18-M can be deployed from small naval platforms, including unmanned surface vessels (USV). The AUV’s embedded processing allows it to process sonar image raw data in real time and extract a list of contacts which are relayed back to the command center using an advanced communication network, with a USV or UAS acting as gateway. These contacts are then reviewed by sonar operators onboard a mothership or onshore.

The AUV is also able to detect hazards such as improvised explosive devices and pollutants, and provide accurate maps of the seabed that allows the environment to be assessed with high fidelity.

The AUV A18-M integrates synthetic aperture sonar and has high area coverage rate of around two square kilometres per hour. This optimal configuration enables it to cover large areas of around 20-40 square kilometres, depending on transit distance, in short timescales with superior image quality and reduced risk to personnel.

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