The Government of Canada has awarded Kraken Robotics a prime contract for the provision of Remote Minehunting and Disposal Systems (RMDS) for the Department of National Defense (DND).
Under the program, Kraken will deliver remote minehunting and disposal systems to His Majesty’s Royal Canadian Navy on the East Coast (located in Halifax, Nova Scotia) and the West Coast (located in Esquimalt, British Columbia).
The RMDS consist of two classes of Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs): Light Weight AUVs and Operator Portable AUVs, all of which will be equipped with Kraken’s AquaPix Synthetic Aperture Sonar (SAS).
The RMDS also include a number of Combat-variant and Training-variant MDS, Transportable Command Center (TCC) and Computer-Based Trainer (CBT).
The contract has an estimated 24-month acquisition followed by an initial five-year Integrated Logistics Support (ILS) program, which includes options for additional equipment, spare parts, training, and technical support.
Formal contract signature and kickoff of the Acquisition program will occur in January 2023. If all options in the Acquisition and ILS programs are selected, the total value will exceed $50 million, consisting of approximately $40 million for Acquisition and $10 million for ILS.
Kraken’s partners on this program include Kongsberg Maritime Canada Ltd., provider of HII’s Mission Technologies Division’s REMUS AUV, thyssenkrupp Marine Systems Canada Ltd (tkMS), providing their SEAFOX mine disposal vehicles, and SH Defence who will provide the containerized multi mission module system ‘The Cube’ as transportable command center and effector/ launch and recovery center.
“This represents a huge win not only for the Kraken team as innovators of world-leading minehunting solutions, but also an immensely proud moment for our Canadian personnel. Delivery of Kraken’s RMDS solution will provide Canada with a world-class mine-hunting and mine disposal capability, and enable further collaboration with our NATO allies, leveraging common technology platforms across our allied fleets,” said Karl Kenny, President and CEO of Kraken. “For Kraken, this program is building upon the success we have had supplying underwater sensors, platforms, and services to a number of NATO navies including the US, UK, Australia, Denmark, Poland, and others. Kraken has deployed our SAS solutions on the family of HII AUVs across several countries, so we are looking forward to bringing that field-proven capability to the Royal Canadian Navy.”
“This world class system will enable the Canadian Armed Forces to safely detect and, if necessary, neutralize underwater threats without the need to enter a suspected minefield,” said Nick Burchill, VP Sales, Kongsberg Maritime Canada Ltd. “Being able to declare sea lines of communication as ‘safe’, in times of crisis, is critical to the Global Economy.”
“We’re proud to be part of the Kraken team bringing this world class mine hunting capability to the Royal Canadian Navy,” said Duane Fotheringham, President of the Unmanned Systems business group at HII’s Mission Technologies division. “Our newest REMUS 300s represents the most advanced man-portable AUVs on the market today.”
“We are pleased to be working with Kraken to deliver to the RCN our combat proven SEAFOX Mine Disposal Vehicle, which is in active service with 12 navies on over 70 different platforms,” said Rick Gerbrecht, President & CEO of tkMS Canada. “As part of the RMDS solution space, SEAFOX is easy to handle, requires little preparation time and operates with a high degree of safety and efficiency, serving as a distinct force multiplier in theater of mine warfare.”
“We are proud to have our containerized multi mission module system ‘The Cube’ selected by Kraken as the new transportable command center and handling system for the Remote Minehunting and Disposal System (RMDS),” said René Bertelsen, CEO of SH Defence. “With this choice of modular system, the Royal Canadian Navy will not only be able achieve interchangeability between RCN platforms but also with allied nations. ‘The Cube’ also supports the RCN’s mission requirements for future containerized maritime operations and warfare capabilities by providing the ability to adapt new emerging technologies in a safe, easy, and cost-efficient way.”