DSEI 2019

USV gears up for ASW role [DSEI19D2]

11 September 2019

Atlas Elektronik UK (AEUK) (Stand S10- 345) has completed acceptance testing of its latest ARCIMS unmanned surface vehicle (USV) ahead of integration with a new antisubmarine warfare (ASW) payload known as SeaSense.

ARCIMS (Atlas Remote Capability Integrated Mission Suite) is a modular 11m USV designed to integrate a number of different payloads.

Originally developed for mine countermeasures applications, the system has been evolved to embrace the ASW mission, following the receipt of a contract in early 2017 under which AEUK will deliver two optionally manned ARCIMS vehicles configured with an ASW surveillance mission module. Delivery is set for 2020.

Usually supplied as a fully autonomous USV, the ARCIMS SeaSense variant is additionally required to support a mission crew of two. This has required the provision of an enclosed wheelhouse with climate control, mission module operator station, galley and toilet facilities.

The SeaSense ASW mission package features a compact active/passive variable-depth sonar − combining a high-power omnidirectional transmitter and a triplet receive array on a single tow − optimised for operation in challenging littoral environments characterised by warm, shallow water conditions.

The active towed body contains free-flooded ring transducers; the associated receive array − using a triplet configuration to resolve left/right bearing ambiguity − provides for the passive surveillance and active reception.

According to AEUK, the ASW surveillance mission module will be used to patrol ‘‘littoral waters and conduct persistent monitoring of underwater activity for early detection of potential threats’’ such as submarines, mini-submarines, and diver delivery vehicles.

Mission planning and management are performed from a dedicated portable command centre (PCC) on shore or on a supporting mother ship.

The PCC also supports manned missions with the transmission of real-time sonar data from ARCIMS SeaSense to the PCC-based mission command.

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