Naval Group showcases new drone management solution

In September 2021, French defense contractor Naval Group successfully conducted operational demonstrations of its drones’ mission management solution integrated with the combat management system.

In partnership with Autoridade Maritima Nacional de Portugal (AMN), Tekever, ECA Group, Edisoft and TNO among others, Naval Group carried out a large-scale sea demonstration using an underwater drone (UUV) and two aerial drones (UAV). The three drones were deployed from a Portuguese navy offshore patrol vessel (OPV), the NRP Setubal, off the coast of Troia, in Portugal, and from a land base. The scenarios involved assisting a migrant boat and foiling drug trafficking.

The real-time planning, management and operation of the drones and payloads, as well as the communication between the OPV and the shore-based centre for the coordination of the operation, were all carried out from Naval Group’s drones’ mission management solution. During this demonstration, a suspicious vessel was detected, identified and neutralised in less than 30 minutes.

The demonstrations took place at the Troia naval base in Portugal as part of the European collaborative project COMPASS 2020 (Coordination of Maritime Assets for Persistent And Systematic Surveillance) which aims at strengthening the European Union’s maritime surveillance capabilities.

“This program is the result of an intense European collaboration to which Naval Group is proud to participate. Thanks to the Naval Group solution, the mission management of drones is facilitated within joint and combined coalitions to gain efficiency and increase interoperability between ships and drones. We hope that COMPASS2020 will pave the way for other European collaborative projects in this field,” Vanessa Cauvin, Director of R&D Collaborative Development Europe, said.

Recently, Naval Group signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Singapore’s Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA) to jointly explore new technologies such as additive manufacturing for naval applications.

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Photo: Naval Group