Royal Navy tests unmanned equipment in operational environment
"Groundbreaking" trials in Norway saw for the first time a range of robotic equipment being tested in an operational environment, with many benchmarks for the autonomous future of the Royal Navy.
Exercise Autonomous Advance Force was carried out with the assistance of Royal Marines Small Boat Specialists 47 Commando, Royal Navy's amphibious transportation dock ship HMS Albion (L14), NavyX's autonomous accelerator and the Chief Technology Officer's Office.
Those innovations made their debut in an operational environment in the successful four-day exercise.
The trials put unmanned surface vehicle (USV) MAST-13, heavy-lift drone Malloy, remotely controlled air system (RPAS) Puma, and unmanned sub-surface drone Remus through their paces in the extreme Arctic conditions.
HMS Albion has implemented an artificial intelligence (AI) program to monitor all of this software, with industry partners bringing on board to introduce and supervise the device tests.
47 Commando Royal Marines Small Boat Specialists operated in Norway with HMS Albion, the NavyX Autonomous Accelerator of the Royal Navy and the Chief Technology Officer Office to see how the device could function during operations.
This was the first time an unmanned surface vessel was run in HMS Albion from the port, and the first time that 700X Naval Air Squadron flew Puma from a Royal Marines landing craft.
Maritime Business World