Norway's Kongsberg Maritime is expecting to complete development of its HUGIN Superior multirole autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) by the end of 2019, company officials told Jane's .
The HUGIN Superior will be the newest and largest member of the company's HUGIN family of modular AUVs, measuring 6.6 m long, 0.875 in diameter, and 2,200 kg in weight. The current flagship HUGIN 6000 AUV is 6.2 m long and weighs 1,850 kg.
The new AUV development, which was launched in December 2018 in Horten, Norway, is designed to manoeuvre at depths of up to 6,000 m, drawing power from a hot swappable and pressure tolerant 62.5 kWh lithium polymer battery. According to Kongsberg, this equates to a 30% increase in onboard energy capacity without altering the AUV's form factor or size, contributing to an improved endurance of up to 72 hours of runtime when travelling at 3 kt, or up to 52 hours at sustained speeds of 4 kt with mission payloads operating at 90% of the time in both speed profiles.
The company notes that the extended energy capacity also enables the HUGIN Superior to be fitted with additional mission payloads, which contributes to improved underwater survey or surveillance performance, while maintaining comparable levels of endurance with existing HUGIN AUVs.
The new AUV will be equipped with the company's latest HISAS 1032 dual-receiver synthetic aperture sonar (SAS), which is claimed to be capable of generating a 1,000 m swath at 2.5 kt with a typical resolution of 5×5 cm for SAS imagery.
It will also feature the EM 2040 Mk II multibeam echo sounder, which offers a swath coverage sector of up to 170° with a single receiver, as opposed to the 140° offered by earlier EM 2040 systems, as well as refined software processing algorithms for improved data quality.
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