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Sea Platforms

Saab completes production version of Sea Wasp ROV

02 August 2019
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The Sea Wasp ROV, pictured operating in Huntington Beach port, California, during the ‘Coastal Trident’ exercise in 2016. Source: Saab Seaeye

Sweden's Saab has finalised the production version of its Sea Wasp remotely operated vehicle (ROV).

Sea Wasp offers a waterborne ROV-based capability for tackling improvised explosive devices (IEDs). The vehicle has been in development since about 2014, following Saab's receipt of a contract from the US cross-government Combating Terrorism Technical Support Office (CTTSO).

The company is now readying its "productionised Sea Wasp Mk 1 version", Chris Lade, Sea Wasp sales manager in Saab's underwater systems business unit, told Jane's .

Saab plans to formally reveal the production version later in 2019. Any prospective customer proceeding with a purchase would receive this version, Lade added. Development of the production-ready version was funded by the company.

Sea Wasp is launched and recovered by a two-person team, with a variety of fittings optional to aid deployment. Remote control is carried out from a host platform or ashore. Sea Wasp can operate in currents of up to 2.5 kt.

The 1.7 m, 90 kg vehicle is controlled via a fibre-optic tether of variable length.

It observes its operating environment and potential targets using a Norbit wideband multibeam forward-looking sonar and a pair of colour cameras (one on the front of the vehicle and one atop an electrical manipulator arm), and manoeuvres using six thrusters positioned around the vehicle.

Ordnance disposal is achieved using controlled explosive/non-explosive effects delivered using proprietary disruptor systems, including a small charge or water jet deployed from the manipulator arm and enabled by Sea Wasp's firing circuit through the tether.

The operating package includes the vehicle, tether, a control console, a 180-260 V AC power supply unit (PSU), and access to power.

The production-ready version has brought several modifications to the package.

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