The EMNS, which will be used on the Mine Counter Measures (MCM) Avenger-class ships, will deploy BAE Systems’ Archerfish mine disposal system, a remotely-operated underwater vehicle that locates mines using sonar. An operator then uses video to identify the mine, which is then destroyed.
Under the terms of the contract Lockheed will develop hardware, software and interfaces for the system and integrate it with the MCM ships. The company will deliver two EMNS engineering development models to the navy for developmental and operational testing.
Lockheed will employ a scalable, open architecture capable system for the Avenger-class ships that will mean rapid technology insertion, increasing capabilities in a shorter time and at a lower cost. The open architecture approach will enhance EMNS’s interoperability with other mine countermeasures systems.
‘The EMNS provides the navy with an increased mine countermeasures capability while at the same time dramatically reducing the time it takes to neutralise mines,’ said Denise Saiki, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin’s Undersea Systems. ‘The system also enables an early step for moving mine countermeasures systems towards an open architecture, open business model.’