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UDT 2011: UK's MHPC trials expected next year

8th June 2011 - 17:00 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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The UK MoD's Mine Countermeasures, Hydrographic, Patrol Craft (MHPC) project is set to progress onto it's assessment phase next year, according to BAE Systems.

Speaking to Shephard at the Undersea Defence Technology (UDT) Europe exhibition in London, the company's future systems team leader Phil Lynch said BAE Systems was continuing to concentrate on the development of wider C2 components of the programme despite its Talisman UUV losing out to an Atlas Electronik platform for the project's concept design phase.

The UK MoD's MHPC project comprises a wider effort led by the Naval Design Partnering Team  aimed at dealing with requirements for future naval vessels and their systems and associated equipment. The MHPC project is also expected to tie in with the MoD's Tactical Maritime Unmanned Aerial System (TMUAS) programme which, according to industry sources, will involve the acquisition of a VTOL air frame.

Lynch said BAE Systems was focussing on MHPC's cooperation with other assets including UAVs, USVs, manned ships and vessels as well as towed sensors. He continued: 'The Royal Navy is looking for a more integrated approach and BAE Systems is concentrating on the command team and use [of MHPC]. We have talked about its concept of operations and wider aspects [of the project] with the MoD and an assessment phase is expected next year.' However, Lynch said any physical assessment would be preceded by 'synthetic' tests.

Referring to BAE Systems' littoral UUV which is known as Talisman 'L', Lynch said it was still holding the platform as a pre-production model and said the company was still looking for the 'right opportunity', adding that talks were ongoing with undisclosed nations and companies.

However, Lynch conceded that the Royal Navy was 'very happy' with its Hydroid's Remus UUV which is currently in service. ATLAS was not available to comment on the project.

 

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