BAE Systems signs mine neutraliser contract with KAI

Source: BAE Systems, Defence Industry Europe

BAE Systems has won a contract to adapt a new mine disposal system using Archerfish for Korea Aerospace Industries, as part of the development of the Republic of Korea (ROK) Navy’s new anti-mine helicopter fleet.

Already in service with the US Navy, Archerfish is a remote-controlled underwater mine neutraliser that is launched and operated from surface ships, underwater vehicles and helicopters.

Archerfish combats the resistance of Insensitive munition mines to disposal whilst reducing resource outlays. Clearance time is lowered by a factor of 4 units and through life costs are also reduced due to the integration of the warhead and package.

According to BAE Systems, Archerfish can be launched and operated from surface ships, helicopters and unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs). It is deployed from a launch ‘cradle’ with a fibre optic data link providing exacting command of the weapon. Through the use of high frequency sonar and low light video data, Archerfish will identify mine threats and then emit a shaped charge warhead, initiating a full order detonation of the target.

Under the GBP 7.4 million contract BAE Systems will provide a complete mine countermeasure capability along with engineering expertise and support to Korea Aerospace Industries and Republic of Korea Navy.

“We are proud to be working with Korea Aerospace Industries to develop the Republic of Korea Navy’s future helicopter mine neutralisation capability. This builds on Archerfish’s proven credentials for mine clearance operations with the US Navy. Archerfish helps to keep sailors safe, increases the efficiency of mine clearance missions, and is small and lightweight making it ideal for integration into airborne and surface platforms,” said Dr. Brooke Hoskins, Director of Products and Training Services for BAE Systems Maritime Services.

Archerfish reduces the time needed to identify and neutralise targets and eliminates the need to put divers into the water.

Under the new contract new features will be developed for the technology including a light-weight launcher and a new data connection link between the aircraft and Archerfish vehicle

Archerfish is manufactured in the UK at BAE Systems’ Broad Oak facility in Portsmouth, Hampshire, and Hillend facility in Dunfermline, Fife.



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