In a development that aims to change the maritime landscape, Kraken Technology Group and L3Harris Technologies have formally announced a collaboration to elevate the control systems within the K40 MANTA uncrewed surface-subsurface vehicle (USSV) platform. 

This partnership lays the groundwork for advancements in autonomous capabilities, ultimately steering the USSV domain toward full autonomy and advances the integration of control systems within the K40 MANTA.

The K40 MANTA platform is designed for surface transit using foils before submerging for covert and agile underwater manoeuvres. This USSV, with its performance capabilities, necessitates incorporating control systems. 

The integrated control systems developed through this collaboration will empower the remote control of the K40 MANTA, serving as a testbed for an array of engineering evaluations. These include testing, foil development, powertrain calibration, and demonstrations. 

As the control systems come to life, it is expected that future developmental stages will harness this foundation to unlock full autonomy.

Speaking on this collaboration, Mal Crease, Founder and CEO of Kraken Technology Group, expressed his anticipation: “We look forward to working with L3Harris on the implementation of key systems for K40 MANTA as a foundation for future developments.”

Mark Exeter, Managing Director, ASV, L3Harris, echoed this sentiment, stating, “L3Harris is proud to collaborate with Kraken on this groundbreaking platform. Our two companies possess complementary skills, benefiting both organizations through this venture. 

Furthermore, this collaboration paves the way for broader collaboration, capitalizing on our shared expertise and further facilitated by our proximity to Portsmouth, a renowned UK marine innovation hub.”

Primes with experience in platform autonomy, such as L3Harris, are leveraging their unique expertise in this domain to engage with new defence industry partners, building relationships and setting the foundations for a much larger autonomous UMV market, according to GlobalData’s “Thematic Intelligence: Unmanned Maritime Vehicles 2023” report.

This collaboration signifies a step for the K40 MANTA platform.

Kraken Robotics has been making strides in the global marine technology sector, securing a $9.5m contract with an undisclosed Asia-Pacific navy, and Kraken has recently acquired a $9m follow-on contract to supply mine hunting systems to an unknown NATO member’s navy to provide their Katfish towed synthetic aperture sonar, tentacle winch, and autonomous launch and recovery system. 

In 2020, Kraken secured a $36m contract with the Danish Ministry of Defence for similar systems.