On 23 to 24 January 2014 SAES participated in meetings with the Security Information and Mission Innovation Group (SMI2G) in Brussels, to launch the USMA programme within the framework program European Horizon 2020 (H2020).

The SMI2G, born in 2004, is an open forum oriented to security programmes in the EU in order to exchange views on potential proposals for research and technology (R&T). SAES has contacted European companies and research centres to find partners to develop the USMA program and obtain European funding.

The USMA (Signature Underwater Monitoring and Analysis Centre) programme, will be presented as one of the proposals under the Horizon 2020 programme, which is conceived to ensure the implementation of the European Directive 2008/56/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 June 2008 that establishes a framework for community action in the field of marine environment (Marine Strategy framework directive). This directive, which will be mandatory from 2020, requires all EU countries to develop marine strategies to maintain biodiversity, and preserve the diversity and dynamism of ocean and sea ecology, while ensuring the oceans are sustainably exploited and remain clean.

The implementation of these strategies require the development of equipment and standard measurement procedures that allow both assess the impact of any contaminant as to establish reference levels. In this scenario, progress must be made in measuring the impact of influences such as acoustic, electrical and magnetic in the flora and fauna of the seas and oceans.

SAES, a specialist company and leader in underwater electronic technology in Spain, has solid experience in projects related to the multi-influence measurement MIRS (Multi-influence Range System). MIRS, which is being used in European projects such as SIRAMIS, is a portable device at the forefront of the market for measuring electric, acoustic, magnetic, seismic and pressure signatures of vessels. USMA was born based on this knowledge.

The USMA programme will develop the technology and procedures in addition to conducting measurement campaigns to optimise technology progresses and develop databases containing information of interest in areas such as defence, environment, tourism and fishing.