Saildrone launches first Surveyor USV for US Navy

March 20, 2024  - By
Image: Saildrone

Image: Saildrone

Saildrone has released its first aluminum Surveyor unmanned surface vehicle (USV) off the Austal USA production line in Mobile, Alabama. Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Lisa Franchetti was on site to inspect the vehicle, ahead of these new USVs being tested under contract to the U.S. Navy.

The Surveyor USV is primarily designed for ocean mapping and maritime domain awareness. The wind, solar power and a diesel generator for long-range, long-endurance missions in the open ocean power it.

The Surveyor is equipped with the latest multibeam sonar technology, which enables it to map the seafloor up to a depth of 11,000 m. Additionally, it can carry defense and security payloads that are specifically designed to detect and respond to various maritime threats and challenges.

Upcoming Navy missions will focus on the ability of the Surveyor to deliver both surface and undersea intelligence for a range of high-priority applications, including anti-submarine warfare (ASW).

To meet the increasing demand for Surveyor USVs, Saildrone partnered with Austal USA, an Alabama-based ship manufacturer, to produce one Surveyor every six weeks, with the ability to scale up production as demand requires.

At 20 m long and weighing 15 tons, the Surveyor classifies as a medium USV, built to American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) Light Warship code. These first Surveyors are contracted to the U.S. Navy to test and evaluate Surveyor-class vehicles in multiple environments.

This article is tagged with and posted in Defense, Latest News, Mapping, UAV/UGV