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2015:  JAN | FEB | MARCH | APRIL

April 2015 Issue

SAIC Continues Task Order For US Navy MMS
The Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (SSC) Pacific awarded Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC), based in McLean, Virginia, a prime task order to continue to provide training and care for marine mammals participating in the U.S. Navy’s Marine Mammal Systems (MMS), based at naval submarine bases in Kings Bay, Georgia; San Diego, California; and Bangor, Washington.

This follow-on task order has a one-year base period of performance, four one-year options, and a total contract value of approximately $59 million, if all options are exercised.

SAIC has held the task order for more than 25 years.

The U.S. Navy’s MMS relies on dolphins and sea lions to find and mark the location of underwater objects.

Sentinel Sonar Successfully Detects Divers During IMCMEX
Diver detection sonar technology developed by Sonardyne International Ltd. (Yateley, England) has played an important part in a major international exercise organized to train naval forces in mine countermeasures, maritime security operations and harbor protection operations. Sonardyne’s Sentinel Intruder Detection Sonar (IDS) detects divers and small underwater targets, thereby providing local underwater situational awareness.

The International Mine Counter-Measures Exercise (IMCMEX) runs off the coast of Bahrain every 18 months to test the abilities of the navies of the world to keep sea lanes open and safe.

Over the course of the three-week long exercises, the U.S. Navy owned and operated expeditionary Sentinel system was deployed in a variety of scenarios to demonstrate its capabilities as a rapidly deployable technology for protecting high-value marine assets.

Divers from participating countries were challenged to evade detection during simulated assaults on various naval assets protected by Sentinel. On each occasion, Sentinel was successful in alerting operators to the approaching threat.

Hornbeck Closes Sale Of Three Vessels to US Navy
Hornbeck Offshore Services, Inc. (Covington, Louisiana) has closed the previously announced sale of three 250 EDF-class OSVs, the HOS Arrowhead, the HOS Eagleview and the HOS Westwind, that were previously chartered to the U.S. Navy.

Since their construction in 2008 and 2009, these vessels have supported the U.S. Navy’s submarine fleet on the East and West Coast of the U.S. In order for the Navy to continue receiving the unique capabilities of these vessels, Congress has required their purchase from the company. The three vessels were sold for $114 million.

The vessel purchase agreement includes an option for the acquisition of a fourth vessel currently under charter to the U.S. Navy, the HOS Black Powder, that, if exercised as anticipated, would bring the aggregate sale amount to $152 million.

Hornbeck separately entered into an operations and maintenance contract for the three vessels sold.

Fish Inspire AUV Movement In Nearshore, Littoral Waters
Researchers at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) have taken inspiration from fish to design and develop novel underwater propulsion, control and sensing solutions for nearshore and littoral zone missions. NRL researchers have developed an actively controlled curvature robotic fin that provides scaled-down AUVs a novel, low-speed propulsion system.

The artificial pectoral fin has been integrated into a man-portable AUV named the Wrasse-inspired Agile Near-shore Deformable-fin Automaton, or WANDA. Four side-mounted fins, two forward and two aft, provide all propulsion and control for the vehicle. Algorithms use information about the vehicle motion and surrounding environment to inform changes to the fin-stroke kinematics. This fin can adapt to varying flow conditions and provide the thrust control necessary for low-speed maneuvering as well as precise positioning.

WANDA can operate at speeds in excess of 2 knots, or hold position in the presence of 2-knot currents. WANDA can also successfully coordinate maneuvers to achieve waypoint navigation.

The AUV is being prepared for payload testing. One such payload that will be developed and tested on WANDA starting this year is a biochemical sensing system for trace-level detection of chemical signatures.

2015:  JAN | FEB | MARCH | APRIL

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