Sea Acceptance of Minehunting Systems Under Royal Danish Navy

Kraken Robotics’ mine-hunting sonar systems consist of a KATFISH towed Synthetic Aperture Sonar, Tentacle Winch and ALARS, topside C2 equipment, remote operation, and more By Abi Wylie / 01 Mar 2024
Sea Acceptance of Minehunting Systems Under Royal Danish Navy
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Kraken Robotics Inc. has completed all deliveries and successful sea acceptance of all systems for its mine-hunting sonar equipment under the Royal Danish Navy Minehunting sonar upgrade program. 

This contract was signed in September 2020, following a competitive bidding process. Under the contract with the Danish Ministry of Defence Acquisition and Logistics Organization (DALO), Kraken has delivered four complete turnkey mine-hunting systems.

Each system consists of a KATFISH™ towed Synthetic Aperture Sonar, Tentacle® Winch and Autonomous Launch and Recovery System (ALARS), topside command and control equipment, and remote operation and monitoring capability for standoff mine-hunting operations.

Starting in 2022, the KATFISH mine-hunting systems were integrated onboard the Royal Danish Navy’s optionally uncrewed surface vessels (USVs), the MSF-class. Kraken worked closely with MCM Denmark operators and workshop technicians as well as skilled local Danish shipyard, JOBI, to install Kraken’s DNV design approved Autonomous Launch and Recovery System (ALARS) onto the MSF-class in parallel with the MSF-class planned mid-life refit.

Kraken also integrated the KATFISH system with Saab’s Command and Control (C2) software, providing operators with a seamless experience for mission planning and mission monitoring. The inclusion of Kongsberg’s Maritime Broadband Radio (MBR) enables the complete system to operate remotely, streaming full resolution sonar imagery in real-time at ranges exceeding line of sight.

In 2023, Kraken also entered in a 7-year sustainment contract with DALO, with options for two further 7-year extensions, for a total possible 21 years of sustainment. The sustainment program includes regularly scheduled maintenance, repair, and overhaul as well as provision of training and spare parts, and the delivery of regular capability enhancements through software updates. Throughout 2024, Kraken will also be delivering additional spares, including spare towcables and two spare KATFISH towbodies.

Kraken has developed and delivered extensive training programs with the MCM Denmark team, including Onboard Operator, Onboard Maintainer, and Depot Maintainer training certification programs. As of 2024, the Royal Danish Navy will have completed their first full year of KATFISH operations, with an undisclosed large number of operational hours. 

Commander (Navy) K.P. Hansen, Commanding Officer of MCM Denmark said; “Our operators have been extremely pleased with the performance of the KATFISH system, including the ability for safe automated remote launch and recovery. The addition of this valuable high-resolution, high-speed seabed survey tool to our MCM toolbox has provided our operators with an invaluable capability in seabed warfare.”

The Head of the Maritime Division within DALO, Captain (RDN) Jakob Damgaard Rousøe noted in February 2024; “The process of integrating the Kraken KATFISH sonar into the Danish MCM forces is coming to an end and it is anticipated that the MCM capacity will reach Full Operational Capability (FOC) within the first half of 2024. 

“An extremely extensive and close coordinated work has been put into the system integration from all stakeholders. This has resulted in many days and hours onboard the small MCM drones at the Naval base in Frederikshavn. I have followed the work closely and I am very pleased with the overall result. A very impressive sensor providing very detailed images that will increase the detection and classification probability of mine like echoes significantly.”

Posted by Abi Wylie Connect & Contact
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