Kongsberg Wins Contract to Supply AUVs for Mine Counter-Measure Prowess
Kongsberg Maritime will supply Polish shipbuilder Remontowa Shipbuilding SA (RSB) to three shipsets of Kongsberg HUGIN AUV (Autonomous Underwater Vehicle) systems and related HiPAP positioning and communication systems for three newbuild warships for the Polish Navy.
The total contract value is in excess of €10 million ($9.7 million), with the Kongsberg equipment destined for the next three vessels in the Kormoran II mine-countermeasures (MCM) vessel programme. These three ships will be commissioned from 2026 to 2027. The three HUGIN/HiPAP shipsets will be delivered to the yard over the next four years to match with the new vessel delivery schedule.
Kongsberg said that this new contract follows on from previous contracts for the successful integration of HUGIN and HiPAP systems on the first three vessels in the Kormoran II programme by Kongsberg Maritime and RSB.
Kongsberg HUGIN Autonomous Underwater Vehicles are marine robots offering the ultimate in autonomous remote subsea search and survey capability. These free-swimming autonomous underwater vehicles are characterised by great manoeuvrability and excellent stability for high-quality data collection. Hydrodynamic shape, accurate instruments and excellent battery capacity make these AUVs a popular choice for governments and militaries worldwide.
One of the many benefits of the HUGIN systems is their modular platform and wide range of options. The HUGINs aboard the Kormoran II vessels will benefit from:
- Kongsberg HISAS 1032 Synthetic Aperture Sonar for long range, high-resolution imagery and bathymetry.
- Kongsberg EM2040 Multibeam Echosounder, an industry standard bathymetric mapping sonar
- UHD Colour Camera with LED Lighting Panel for high-resolution optical imagery.
- Forward-looking Sonar and altimeters for obstacle avoidance and trajectory planning.
- Low magnetic-signature stinger launch & recovery system (LARS).
- Kongsberg Sunstone advanced Inertial Navigation System (INS) for industry leading autonomous position accuracy.
Commenting on the contract award, Kongsberg Maritime SVP Stene Førsund said: “These latest contracts are a true acknowledgment of a team effort over many years, and it shows that Kongsberg Maritime offers the right technology and solutions for the growing AUV market. We see that customers put AUVs into operation in many applications, and we believe that autonomous underwater vehicles will be used in even more applications in the future. We have some big-name clients, but when the navy of a sovereign nation and fellow NATO member continues to put its trust in our technologies, it’s an inspiring moment for us.”
CCO at Remontowa Shipbuilding, Dariusz Jaguszewski said: “These mine countermeasure vessels represent an important contract for Remontowa Shipbuilding as well as an important statement and reinforcement of Poland’s national security in a fast-changing world. Kongsberg Maritime has already successfully delivered and commissioned HUGIN and HiPAP systems to us for the first three vessels in the Kormoran II programme. The experience of nine years work with Kongsberg through these deliveries has been highly professional throughout and we are confident that the technologies to be delivered represent the state-of-the-art in underwater autonomy and mine countermeasure systems.”
Capable of fully autonomous operations without surface vessel support, HUGIN is also designed to work in conjunction with the HiPAP (High Precision Acoustic Positioning) family of underwater positioning and navigation systems. This allows for high-accuracy position updates for the vehicle, as well as real-time communications for status, sensor quality assurance and on-the-fly mission replanning.
Analysts reported that the non-magnetic steel hull Kormoran II-class is designed for mine-hunting in Poland’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ), with task forces in the Baltic and North seas. The vessels are intended to provide substantial increase of Polish MCM capabilities, doubling the number of existing Kormoran II type vessels in service, to secure the sea lines of communications.
The Kormoran IIs class minehunters have a full load displacement of 850 tonnes, an overall length of 58.5m and can carry a crew complement of 45, with accommodation for seven additional personnel. The RSB’s own in-house design is a multi-toolbox concept, hybrid solution, minehunter where HUGIN AUV is one of underwater systems for stand – off mine countermeasure operations. – shp/kog/aaa (Image: Kongsberg)