France explores use of USVs for future hydographic requirements
French defence procurement agency DGA has awarded iXblue a €366,000 ($436,000) contract to experiment with the acoustic measurement, speed and range performance of fusiform-hulled (tapering at bow and stern) and lean-hulled USVs.
These experiments will feed into the definition phase of the Future Hydrographic and Oceanographic Capacity (CHOF) programme for the French Navy.
In November 2020, with CHOF in mind, iXblue provided its DriX USV and associated launch and recovery system for tests by the French Navy Hydrographic and Oceanographic Service off the coast of Brittany (pictured).
DriX has a drop keel with gondola which can accommodate a payload of up to 600 kg; a mast with a crows nest and Rafale crown; and a 37.5hp diesel engine.
Payloads for the platform include a towed array light sonar, side scan sonar, sub bottom profiler, lidar, cameras and optical sensors, notes Shephard Defence Insight.
CHOF will result in the replacement of three French hydrographic vessels (La Pérouse, Borda, and Laplace), with a specific requirement to make use of USV technology.
As part of our promise to deliver comprehensive coverage to our Defence Insight and Premium News subscribers, our curated defence news content provides the latest industry updates, contract awards and programme milestones.
More from Uncrewed Vehicles
IAI deepens Indian ties with Elcom to support UAV fleets
A new MoU on drone MRO and upgrades follows previous agreements IAI has made with Elcom.
UK universities aided Iranian drone programmes, report claims
According to media reports, researchers at universities aided the development of Iranian drones.
Leonardo showcases new AWHero developments at SeaFuture 2023
At SeaFuture 2023 in La Spezia, Italy, Leonardo showcased new AWHero rotary-wing UAS (RWUAS) developments, touting its maritime operations capabilities.
Third order for German 2-in-1 drone for Ukraine
On 31 May, Quantum Systems announced that the Ukrainian MoD had ordered 300 additional Vector drones under a third order that the German government is funding.
US Army moves forward on future tactical UAS without AeroVironment
AeroVironment has been dropped from the hunt to provide the US Army with a Future Tactical UAS (FTUAS), leaving Griffon Aerospace, Northrop Grumman, Sierra Nevada and Textron Systems in the running.
Navantia, SAES and Perseo to jointly develop line of uncrewed underwater vehicles
At FEINDEF in Madrid, Navantia, SAES and Perseo announced an intention to develop a line of uncrewed underwater vehicles (UUVs).