Adding to the Seagull Unmanned Surface Vessels’ (USV) capability to mount and launch light weight torpedoes, Elbit Systems ISTAR division has teamed with Leonardo to develop and demonstrate Leonardo’s lightweight and mini torpedoes launching capabilities from the USV. The two companies announced the agreement at Exponaval (Valparaiso, Chile, 4-7 December).
The solution will be based on the same architecture used for airborne torpedo launching systems. Operational with the Israeli Navy, Elbit Systems’ Seagull USV performed superbly in the Belgian Defence Ministry 2017 North Sea trials and has been participating regularly in international naval exercises conducting Mine Counter Measures and Anti-Submarine Warfare missions.
Leonardo holds a strategic market position in the design, production and integration of torpedoes with over 30 Countries having selected its systems.
Elbit Systems Ltd. («Elbit Systems») announced that the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) declared that the Mercury Radio System achieved Full Operational Capability (FOC) and is now in service with the UK Army Cadet Force (ACF).
In conjunction with Drumgrange Ltd. («Drumgrange»), Elbit Systems delivered over 3,000 PRC 710 VHF radios and amplifier sets and 150 PRC 720 HF man-pack radios along with battery charging and ancillary equipment to enable practical field-craft and signals training and a command and control capability. The UK MoD was provided with extensive hardware and software enhancements to achieve best in class Radio performance, and compliance to the highest safety levels.
At a formal customer presentation to mark the occasion, Brigadier Richard Spencer, Head of the Battlefield Tactical Communications and Information Systems (BATCIS) Delivery Team stated: «The delivery of this capability to exacting time, cost and performance parameters is a real success story and I am delighted to see the radios now in the hands of both the Cadets and Instructors».
Elbit Systems Land & Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence (C4I) Division manufactured and supplied the PRC 710 VHF Handheld Radio, including PRC 715 Amplifiers, and the PRC 720 MICOM Pathfinder HF Radios. Both VHF and HF models have been sold in large numbers worldwide.
Martin Fausset, CEO Elbit Systems UK, commented: «We are delighted to become a new radio supplier to the UK MoD providing a valuable capability for the UK Army Cadet Force and future users».
George Howe, Managing Director of Drumgrange, added: «Alongside Elbit Systems, we are pleased to be able to provide the ACF with a new and cutting-edge equipment and communications solution that will not only allow them to train effectively but also provide a key safety communications network for support on exercises and other activities».
Drawing on world class know-how derived from generations of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) design, development and operation and its naval capabilities, Elbit Systems’ newest offering in the unmanned platform field is Seagull – an organic, modular, highly autonomous, multi-mission Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) system.
Seagull is a 39-foot/12-meter USV with replaceable mission modules, with two vessels capable of being operated and controlled in concert using a single Mission Control System (MCS), from manned ships or from the shore.
The system provides unmanned end-to-end mine hunting operation taking the man out of the mine field. It provides mission planning, and on-line operation in known and unknown areas, including area survey, search, detection, classification, identification, neutralization and verification. It is equipped to search the entire water volume and operate underwater vehicles to identify and neutralize mines.
Seagull changes the dynamics of anti-submarine operations by creating a threat to submarines using a cost-effective and available asset, replacing and augmenting manned assets with minimal threat from submarines. It empowers a surface vessel or naval base commander with off-board, available and rapidly deployable Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) capabilities to protect critical sea areas and high-value assets from submarine as well as sea mine threats.
Incorporating Elbit Systems’ extensive experience in UAS, Seagull features a robust, highly-autonomous and safe sailing capability as well as modular mission payload suites, selected to match a variety of required missions including Electronic Warfare (EW), surface force protection, hydrographical missions in addition to the core Mine CounterMeasures (MCM) and ASW missions. The sailing suite includes a patented Autonomous Navigation System (ANS), with obstacle avoidance, which considers the international regulations for preventing collisions at sea.
Network ready and long enduring, Seagull features inherent Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence (C4I) capabilities for enhanced situation awareness and can remain at sea for over 96 hours. The Seagull multi-mission USV system offers navies a true force-multiplier in reducing risk, cost and manpower requirements in performing missions which have only been performed to date by costly manned assets.