Thales teams with Aquabotix for Australian autonomous MCM solution

Photo: Thales

Thales and Aquabotix announced they are joining forces to design and develop a rapidly deployable mine counter measures (MCM), rapid environment assessment (REA) and military hydrographic autonomous system mission solution.

The project is a collaboration with Australian Academia and SMEs including the University of Sydney, Australian Centre for Field Robotics (ACFR), Flinders University, Western Sydney University, Mission Systems Pty Ltd & Ineni Realtime Pty Ltd and will focus on the development and integration of Aquabotix’s next generation ultra-portable swarming technology known as SwarmDiver.

To achieve a variety of missions, swarms of micro-sized autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs), hosted by a larger AUV or autonomous surface vehicle (ASV), are deployed to prepare and facilitate an amphibious landing zone to support any advanced force.

This task is enabled by the integration of SwarmDiver with an autonomy engine that will plan the mission, task the swarm and monitor the rate of mission completion, adapting to changes in environment throughout the mission while coordinating with the parent task group.

The project team’s research and development activities will advance SwarmDiver’s current sensors to include magnetometer, neuromorphic, optical and sonar, enhancing SwarmDiver’s ability to work independently and/or collectively in the execution of mission sets such as surface intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), sub-surface rapid environmental assessment (REA), mine-like object (MILCO) detection and localisation, mine target recognition and ultimately, mine neutralization.

“Thales is delighted to be working with Aquabotix to accelerate the deployment of autonomous systems and solutions in the Maritime domain,” Dr. John Best, Chief Technical Officer, Thales Australia and New Zealand said.

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