General Dynamics Mission Systems unveiled its new Bluefin-9 autonomous unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) at the Oceans 2018 event in Charleston, South Carolina.
GDMS said the completely reengineered vehicle offers defense, commercial and academic customers highly-detailed subsurface data in minutes rather than hours.
The two-man portable UUV provides the same data collection capabilities of larger UUVs, and can be deployed and recovered from piers, a rigid-hulled inflatable boat (RHIB) or other vessels of opportunity.
The Bluefin-9 includes a removable data storage module (RDSM) which stores high-definition images, video and sonar data that can be accessed within minutes of the vehicle’s recovery. It delivers mission endurance of up to eight hours at a speed of three-knots, and can reach speeds of six-knots and dive to 200 meters.
“General Dynamics has invested in the redesigned Bluefin-9 and a broad team of engineering experts has made significant improvements to the design, production quality, modularity and reliability of the entire Bluefin Robotics product family to deliver cost-effective UUVs with more mission capability and range,” said Carlo Zaffanella, a vice president and general manager of General Dynamics Mission Systems. “We are proud to introduce this first product of a new generation of UUVs, designed to meet the dynamic operational challenges of our defense and commercial customers.”