The UK Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) Defence Equipment and Support division has placed an order with SeeByte for the delivery of a maritime autonomy demonstration system.

Under the order, SeeByte will provide a system that includes three Iver3 unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) fitted with L-3 Klein 3500 bathy and side-scan sonars, as well as WHOI Micro Modem 2 systems and navigation systems provided by Teledyne RDI DVLs and KVH Fibre Optic Gyros.

SeeByte technical client manager Alastair Cormack said: "This new generation of autonomous systems should serve to inform in the development of a joint mine countermeasure (MCM) and hydrography capability, equipped with off-board assets.

"They should also help research and develop uses to support other future naval capabilities such as the MHC and the Type 26 frigate."

The OceanServer Technology-manufactured UUVs will include SeeByte’s SeeTrack Neptune and Automatic Target Recognition (ATR) software, which can identifying new targets and effectively adapt to challenges faced by MCM task groups.

Designed as open architecture enabling autonomous multi-vehicle collaboration, SeeTrack Neptune can be operated through SeeTrack Military.

"SeeByte will provide a system that includes three Iver3 unmanned underwater vehicles."

SeeTrack Military is currently used by explosive ordnance disposal and clearance divers to better manage their off-board assets during dangerous and demanding missions.

Scheduled to be integrated with the UK’s Maritime Autonomy Framework developed under Defence Science and Technology Laboratory funding, the UUVs will enable the UK to develop new over-the-horizon capabilities.

The systems will be delivered to the Royal Navy Maritime Autonomous Systems Trials Team.

Image: SeeByte’s maritime autonomy demonstration system will include three Iver3 UUVs. Photo: courtesy of SeeByte Ltd.