High-resolution Synthetic Aperture Sonar Technology to be Integrated on Japanese Mine Detection UUVs

Thales and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) have joined forces to deliver combat-proven high frequency sonars to the Japan Maritime Self-defence Force By DA Editor / 07 Dec 2020
Thales_Mitsubishi Heavy Industries_ high_frequency_sonars

Under a new agreement, Thales’ High Frequency Synthetic Aperture Sonar (HFSAS) SAMDIS will be integrated on the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) OZZ-5 Unmanned Underwater Vehicle (UUV). 

The combination of the Thales HFSAS with Japanese LFSAS (Low Frequency Synthetic Aperture Sonar) technology will allow operators to detect suspected mines regardless of conditions, accommodating today’s increasing demand for MMCM (Maritime Mine Counter Measures). Thales HFSAS provides AuDC (Automatic Detection and Classification) function, which reduces the need for operators to process the collected data.

This contract agreement is the starting point of a long-term program with Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force as end-user and potentially opens the door to export markets. Working together with Thales, MHI is aiming to enter new markets in Japan’s allies by offering high-end technology to the most powerful navies. Thales’ anti-submarine warfare and maritime safety & security systems are currently in service with more than 50 navies.

“Equipping the OZZ-5 underwater vehicle with our high frequency sonar evidences our strong relationship with MHI which started years ago with the development of the OZZ-X prototype. It materializes the continuation of the ongoing Japan/ France bilateral long-term cooperation”, commented Cyrille Dupont, President and CEO of Thales Japan. “Thales is really enthusiastic to bring its field proven expertise for the benefit of national and foreign defense forces through this successful alliance with MHI.”

Alexis Morel, VP Underwater activities, Thales said: “We are very proud to be onboard the OZZ-5 mine warfare UUV with Thales SAMDIS HFSAS and to contribute to the OZZ-5 outstanding operational performances and unique positioning on this highly competitive market segment. This contract demonstrates Thales’ capability to tailor its offerings to any type of vehicle and navy requirement and will pave the way for future achievements with our MHI partner.” 

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