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Thales Australia to Integrate Sonar Tech Into Saildrone USV

Saildrone Voyager USV

Thales Australia has entered a partnership agreement to integrate its BlueSentry towed array sonar into Saildrone’s Surveyor uncrewed surface vehicle. The companies announced their partnership on the sidelines of Sea-Air-Space 2024 at National Harbor, Maryland, on Monday.

According to Thales, the thin-line towed array provides enhanced surveillance and monitoring for open-ocean surveys and maritime domain awareness tasks covering wide areas.

The sonar uses advanced fiber optics and hydrophone technology, as well as acoustic sensor technology, which navies worldwide use for surface and subsurface contact detection and classification. Thales manufactures BlueSentry at its Acoustics Centre of Excellence in Rydalmere, Australia.

In its press release, California-based Saildrone said Surveyor’s 20-meter length and 15-ton weight make it the largest USV in its class. The initial Surveyor USVs were launched in March from Austal USA in Mobile, Alabama, where they underwent tests for the U.S. Navy.

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