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    Canadian Warship Welcomes Norwegian Sailors and their Mine Hunting Technology

    Canada, Norway hone mine-hunting technology during RIMPAC 2016

    Courtesy Photo | PACIFIC OCEAN (JULY 14, 2016) An Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV), also known as...... read more read more



    Courtesy Story

    Commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet       

    Story SLt Michael Van Vlaenderen & MS André Bienvenu

    Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Yellowknife left Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Esquimalt June 23 to participate in Rim of the Pacific 2016 off the southern coast of California from June 30 to August 4. When the ship arrived in San Diego, the ship’s crew welcomed four members of the Royal Norwegian Navy and embarked their Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV), also known as the HUGIN.

    Developed over the last fifteen years by Kongsberg Maritime and the Norwegian Defense Research Establishment, the HUGIN 1000 conducts autonomous, semi-autonomous and supervised mine hunting operations and can operate in waters as deep as 3000 meters.

    Embarking the HUGIN and its equipment involved configuring the Yellowknife, a Maritime Coastal Defense Vessel, in such a way that had never been done before, including fitting two additional containers to the back of the ship. This meant that any response from the ship’s company to commonly practiced emergency procedures, such as a man overboard or fire and flood control, had to be adjusted to fit the new layout.

    “The ship’s engineering department carefully analyzed the impact the new payload would have on the ship’s stability, requiring them to make adjustments to the ship’s ballast,” said Chief Petty Officer Second Class, Evan Mills, Chief Engineer. “Other considerations for the integration of the HUGIN system included running cabling and antennae to the bridge to ensure proper integration of HUGIN’s command and control systems.”

    The HUGIN is launched off the stern of the ship, directly out of its container using a hydraulic Launch and Recovery System (LARS). Once in the water, the HUGIN begins traveling on its pre-programmed course. Within a few minutes, it dives below the surface, conducting a survey of the ocean floor with its high-resolution sonar, or identifying previously found objects with its onboard optical imaging system.

    “While underwater, HUGIN finds its way using a state of the art aided inertial navigation system, and relays its position to the ship using an underwater acoustic modem deployed from the ship,” said Lieutenant Commander Helge Telle, Norwegian Officer in charge of HUGIN.

    “During the course of its mission, which usually runs for four to six hours, HUGIN will surface several times at pre-programmed intervals to communicate with the ship via UHF radio, receiving an up-to-date position and updates to its mission plan.”

    To recover the HUGIN, the ship maneuvers close to the AUV, which detaches its nose cone, then sailors attach a line to the AUV and use it to position the vehicle onto the LARS. Once the HUGIN is safely onboard, the team can begin its post mission analysis to read the data collected during the mission. After its first few deployments, it quickly became apparent just how effective the HUGIN system is at detecting and identifying objects on the sea floor. In the first week of the exercise, HUGIN had identified nine mines.

    “This year’s RIMPAC has proven to be an incredible learning experience in mine countermeasures for all members of HMCS Yellowknife and the Norwegian sailors onboard,” said Lieutenant Commander Donald Thompson-Greiff, Commanding Officer of Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Yellowknife. “The crew did an outstanding job with integrating the HUGIN system on this ship, and it is another example of how the Royal Canadian Navy works closely with our allies to ensure interoperability on any exercise or operation around the world.”

    Twenty-six nations, more than 40 ships and submarines, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel are participating in RIMPAC from June 30 to Aug. 4, in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California. The world’s largest international maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain the cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world’s oceans. RIMPAC 2016 is the 25th exercise in the series that began in 1971.



    Date Taken: 07.25.2016
    Date Posted: 07.25.2016 20:40
    Story ID: 205011
    Location: PACIFIC OCEAN

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