Autonomous Boats To Assist Naval Surveillance


Naval Surveillance Measures: Autonomous Boats To Assist

BAE Systems has commenced conducting tests on unmanned RIB in Portsmouth Naval Base.  BAE systems felt that this site had the right setting for tests of an unmanned RIB’s manufactured by technology company BAE Systems.  The all new autonomous boat will be assisting  military operations without the need to send personnel using surveillance, reconnaissance.  It also helps in protection of larger ships in a fleet.


  • The system is designed as a retrofit to the manned Pacific 24 RIB already deployed across Type 23 Frigates and Type 45 Destroyers.
  • These boats will also go on to the Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers once they enter service.
  • The next stage in its development is to create the sensor suite before ensuring a seamless integration with the combat management system on the parent ship.
  • The new boat, based on Rigid Inflatable Boats (RIB) already used by the Royal Navy, can operate up to 12 hours, either on a pre-planned route or via remote control.
  • In the latter case, the boats can be operated up to 40 km away from the parent ship.

The kit consists of different sensors including navigation radar, 360 degree infrared camera and a laser range finder to give the operator a good impression of the vessel’s surroundings.  ASV, a specialist firm of autonomous systems, developed the software for operation.  The company’s managing director, Dan Hook, said: “The algorithms we’re developing with BAE Systems allow the boat to perform complex missions and navigate through waters avoiding collisions.”

Source: BAE Systems