Saab Sabertooth AUV to be tested with SeaRAY autonomous offshore power system

C-Power announced that a demonstration of a Saab double-hull Sabertooth hybrid autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) will be added to the six-month sea trial of the company’s SeaRAY autonomous offshore power system (AOPS).

The sea trial will take place later this year, in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Water Power Technologies Office and National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the U.S. Navy. The goal is to test and validate the technical and economic capabilities of the SeaRAY AOPS at the Navy’s Wave Energy Testing Site in Hawaii. 

From shore, Hibbard Inshore will remotely program and monitor the Saab Sabertooth AUV during this first-ever instance of an in situ renewable energy system supporting a subsea resident vehicle. Equipped with the R2Sonic Sonic 2024 multibeam echosounder, the untethered Sabertooth will patrol the surrounding area to collect sonar imagery of the sea floor and underwater infrastructure. After each mission, that imagery will be communicated to shore and the Sabertooth recharged via the SeaRAY AOPS.

“The inclusion of Saab’s Sabertooth in the SeaRAY AOPS sea trial is a significant milestone for C-Power,” said C-Power Chief Executive Officer Reenst Lesemann. “I’m grateful to the DOE, NREL, Saab Seaeye, Hibbard, and R2Sonic for their partnership, which was critical to make this first-of-its-kind demonstration possible.”

Testing of the C-Power SeaRAY AOPS is also included in the Navy’s Coastal Trident 2021 program, which is the largest sustained port and maritime security program in the U.S. and regularly involves the participation of more than 150 public and private sector organizations.

Through the Hawaii sea trial and Coastal Trident 2021 program testing and strategic partnerships with government and commercial organizations, C-Power looks to demonstrate how the SeaRAY AOPS can fill the maritime market’s need for offshore power, energy storage, and real-time data and communications for resident marine systems.

The SeaRAY AOPS provides in-situ power, energy storage, and real-time data and communications support that will advance the marine economy toward a future of autonomous, connected and resident technologies, C-Power said. It is designed to support unmanned offshore activities, including subsea vehicles, sensor packages and operating equipment. The SeaRAY AOPS is scalable to capacities from tens of watts to tens of kilowatts. The AOPS is designed to survive the expected conditions of a 100-year storm off the Oregon coast and is easily transported worldwide in two standard ocean containers.

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