ARCIMS USV with AQS-24B minehunting sonar
Atlas Elektronik Group has successfully demonstrated a complete unmanned MCM Detect to Engage mission at the Belgium Navy’s North Sea Unmanned MCM Trials (BE NSU).
On 11 June, the Atlas Elektronik UK (AEUK) ARCIMS Unmanned Surface Vessel (USV) departed the Belgian Naval base fitted with a towed AQS-24B minehunting sonar from Northrop Grumman and the SeaFox mine disposal system from Atlas Elektronik.
ARCIMS transit to the tactical training area was independent of any support from the CPV for the 36km passage. Once in the operational area a six hour “Detect to Engage” mission was carried out using both remote control and autonomous operations. This included 12sqkm of continuous minehunting survey at 14 knots with two laser identification runs and a SeaFox engagement against a mine contact that had been detected and classified by the towed sonar. Atlas Elektronik’s new station keeping autonomy behaviour was utilised to position the ARCIMS for accurate and stable launch and delivery of SeaFox mine disposal mission.
Throughout the realistic tactical scenario the ARCIMS Detect to Engage mission package received C2 from the MCM Commander based on BNS Pollux, which maintained a mobile stand-off distance and utilised a radio communications system that was fitted to the CPV and tested in just 1 hour.
The AEUK ARCIMS USV once again proved its versatility and adaptability matching the CPV speed in transit, towing a minehunting sonar at 14 knots and station holding in SS2/3 and 22 knots of wind. The well known SeaFox was used in a remote controlled engagement whereby the launch from the ARCIMS platform and the successive guidance to the target was completely controlled from the Pollux via a RF connection.
With these trials Atlas Elektronik Group showed to have the components in required to conduct a Detect to Engage mission without a man in the minefield.