Navies around the world need to perform a variety of missions from Maritime Security Operations in territorial waters to Power Projection including interventions on external theaters of operations, and from coastal environments to the deep sea.
Sea mines remain a very efficient and cost-effective means to disrupt commercial shipping as well as to deny naval operations. They are cheap, easy to deploy, and deadly. Numbers of low-tech mines are rising, and are increasingly matched by higher-tech variants, harder to find, and often programmed to detect specific signatures or use torpedoes. Organic and unmanned Mine Counter Measure (MCM) systems are required for assured safe access to meet these new challenges such as stealthy mines equipped with very sensitive sensors, sometimes Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) manufactured by terrorist entities.
Mine warfare operations are clearly evolving towards unmanned, remote or autonomous modes. The next generation of drones, systems and collaborative intelligence software is expected to substantially decrease operators’ workload, allowing a lean crew to operate a fleet of unmanned assets at distance and to deliver the expected mission with an improved level of performance and confidence.
This level of autonomy is requested in modern combat systems to face a variety of operational scenarios in complex environments where sophisticated mines, difficult bottom types and adverse operating situations (enemy fire, GPS jamming, etc.) could badly affect situation assessment and lead to an improper reaction.
Thanks to its experience and leadership, Thales has developed PATHMASTER, a MCM system of systems based on unmanned assets that addresses the full range of configurations and needs of Navies, meeting the requirements of flexibility and evolution.
Being a world leader in MCM systems with more than 300 Mine Hunting sonar systems ordered or in service today, and currently delivering the first operational unmanned MCM system of systems under the framework of the UK/FR MMCM programme, Thales is the right partner to tailor PATHMASTER to meet your exact needs.
To deliver the PATHMASTER solution, Thales’s strength is ‘system of systems’ integration. It is not tied to any supplier of unmanned platforms, sensors or effectors. Whether the need is a proven Thales solution (like the Franco-British MMCM), integrating chosen tools into a wider standoff system, or a Thales sub-system to complete the existing unmanned assets. Thales will work to deliver a full ‘plug and play’ integration.
In a world where Navies are facing growing and sometimes unexpected threats and challenges, Mine Warfare remains a key discipline and, with PATHMASTER unmanned MCM solutions, Thales offers the best answers to ensure Navies effectiveness and safety at sea.