New Protector USV variant detailed
By Richard Scott
Israel's Rafael Advanced Defense Systems has unveiled an enlarged variant of its Protector unmanned surface vessel (USV) re-engineered to embody a series of 'lessons learned' from earlier Protector systems.
Initial deliveries of the new 11 m Protector USV variant which offers greater endurance, increased speed and improved redundancy over the previous 9 m version have already been made to an unnamed customer.
Speaking to IHS Jane's at the Euronaval 2012 exhibition in Paris, Rafael's director of naval systems, Moshe Elazar, said the new USV represented the fourth-generation of the Protector line. "Having previously modified a commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) hullform, we started a value analysis exercise in 2010 and, as a result, have now developed our own unique hullform to reflect the results of operating experience."
He continued: "What we have found is that the behaviour of a USV demands some characteristics different to those found on a standard COTS hull. In particular, the vertical accelerations and slamming encountered on a regular hull imparts high shocks on equipment. So we used a naval architect to develop a deep-V planing hull design that reduces shock loading in high seas while at the same time improving manoeuvrability and speed [to 36 kt].199 of 542 words
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