Underwater UAV specialists Aquabotix anticipate larger orders from navies for underwater swarming technology after the US military awarded it a $150,000 contract to evaluate its underwater unmanned SwarmDiver system. The contract will include training and test support and will enable the US military to evaluate the SwarmDiver for operational use in theatre.
SwarmDiver is a micro-sized unmanned diving and swarming vehicle for littoral waters. It can be used as a first line of defence or for covert underwater special operations. The product was only launched just over a year ago and the latest contract constitutes the fourth order by the US Armed Forces relating to the SwarmDiver family of unmanned vehicles.
Aquabotix CEO Whitney Milton says the contract award is significant for a number of reasons. Firstly, she says it demonstrates a solid trend of acquisition activity by the US, a trend that is often times followed by other navies as products become qualified for use.
Secondly, it is the largest order yet that the US military has placed with the Australian and US-based firm.
“While contract values for providing this type of hardware and services support for evaluation activities are generally small, they represent meaningful and necessary steps to progress commercially developed product to a state of full operational use,” said Milton.
“These facts leave us anticipating more sizeable orders from both the US and other navies.”