BAE Systems has joined forces with Canadian marine technology company Cellula Robotics to accelerate the development of a new Extra Large Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (XLAUV). The two companies plan to demonstrate the XLAUV at sea in the third quarter of 2024.
The collaboration aims to showcase advanced autonomous behaviors for intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) missions. The XLAUV, called Herne, will be designed to meet the requirements of military customers, offering flexibility and persistence for future naval operations.
The demonstration program will test the capabilities of the XLAUV technology package. The payload and ISR package will be integrated into Cellula Robotics’ Solus-XR XLAUV. The Solus-XR is a versatile platform that can be deployed from port facilities and does not require auxiliary support vessels.
The initial configuration of the XLAUV will feature electro-optical and electronic surveillance systems, managed by an autonomous mission brain with artificial intelligence (AI). It will have Li-Ion batteries that provide an endurance of 7 to 10 days. BAE Systems and Cellula Robotics are also exploring options for longer ranges using hydrogen fuel cells and other propulsion systems.
The Solus-XR XLAUV is powered by hydrogen fuel cells and has a range of over 5,000 nautical miles at 3 knots. It can be deployed alone or as part of a fleet to provide persistent surveillance capabilities.
This partnership between BAE Systems and Cellula Robotics is a significant step towards delivering a trusted militarized capability for navies worldwide. The XLAUV will provide the speed, flexibility, and capabilities required to defend critical infrastructure. The demonstration set to take place in 2024 will be a crucial milestone in the development of this technology.
– BAE Systems
– Cellula Robotics