SNMG2 ships take part in NATO research center experiments

Ships from NATO’s Standing Maritime Group 2 joined NATO’s Centre for Maritime Research and Experimentation (CMRE) in La Spezia, Italy, to take part in a series of experiments and trials last week.

Royal Navy’s HMS Diamond, Turkish Navy’s TCG Barbaros and Spain’s ESPS Blas de Lezo visited Italy after completing exercise Brilliant Mariner 17.

The experiments included embarking underwater technology and equipment in SNMG2 flagship HMS Diamond.

CMRE has developed an underwater “glider” or autonomous underwater vehicle that collects environmental data to support naval operations. The SNMG2 ships can then use this data to calibrate their own sonars and to better understand the environment below the waves.

This was the first time a grey-military ship operated a CMRE autonomous glider. CMRE EKOE-MISR was also able to show live underwater glider (EKOE-MISR) and AUV positions in MCCIS at MARCOM on the high side. These autonomous vehicles positions were visualized on board the three frigates contributing to the creation of a common Recognized Maritime Picture (RMP).

The underwater environmental information collected by the glider was used at the CMRE reach-back centre to produce accurate forecasts of underwater variables relevant to provide Meteorological and oceanographic (METOC) support to sonar operators on board, and PLANS/OPS sections of the SNMG2.

A Rapid Acoustic Prediction Service (RAPS) was also successfully demonstrated on board HMS Diamond using the environmental forecasts produced by the EKOE-MISR programm under the LOGMEC17 sea trial.