A global leader in the provision of Autonomous and Tethered surface and undersea vehicles, Teledyne Marine and their industry partners showcased an Autonomous, System of Systems approach to expeditionary Mine-Countermeasures (MCM) using multi domain unmanned assets. The demonstration took place at The Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC) Division Newport during the 2018 Advanced Naval Technology Exercise (ANTX) August 29-31.
The multi-vehicle, multi-company demonstration begins with a Power Docks Blue Isles Autonomous Power Microgrid platform simulating providing power to all vehicles. A Teledyne Oceanscience Z-Boat 1800 RP Autonomous Surface Vessel, starts the exercise by performing a bathymetric and LiDAR survey of the basin. Next, a Planck Aerosystems Shearwater® Unmanned Aerial Vehicle conducts surface surveillance for both object avoidance and threat mitigation for the Z-Boat. A Teledyne Gavia Autonomous Underwater Vehicle then conducts a search-classify-map sidescan survey of the basin. Teledyne CARIS-Onboard, which is running on the Gavia AUV, performs mosaicing of the sidescan data in near real time while Charles River Analytics’ ATR software, also running in near real time on the Gavia AUV, uses advanced image processing algorithms to analyze the CARIS mosaics and perform Automatic Target Recognition (ATR).
The coordinates of a mine-like object are passed to Marine Advanced Research’s WAM-V Autonomous Surface Vessel. The WAM-V moves to the provided coordinates and deploys a Teledyne SeaBotix vLBV300 ROV equipped with a mock-up of a mine disposal system. Finally, Greensea Systems’ inertial navigation and supervised autonomy, maneuvers the ROV to the waypoint with minimal operator assistance, visualizes the target, and simulates neutralization.
“Following the theme of “Human Machine Interaction”, Teledyne and its partners demonstrated how today’s Mine Countermeasures activities can safely be performed by multi domain assets incorporating much needed autonomy. Nicknamed by NUWC Newport, “The Battle of the Basin", our exceptional team used a strength in numbers approach by combining our individual technologies, most of which were small businesses, to perform the job to be done. Autonomy was the focus, starting with mission planning, navigation, and station keeping. Then we mixed in real time data processing and target recognition on the vehicles themselves. Post mission analysis time was practically zero. The thirty-two minute exercise was an amazing display of using autonomous vehicles for mine detection and clearance in a small harbor while keeping the warfighter out of harm’s way” explained Teledyne Marine System’s Vice President of Engineering, Bob Melvin.