Companies team on underwater vehicle

Feb. 22, 2012 at 11:21 AM

QUINCY, Mass., Feb. 22 (UPI) -- Two U.S. companies are working to develop a next-generation, large submersible vehicle that operates in manned and autonomous modes.

Bluefin Robotics, a subsidiary of Battelle, and the Columbia Group said the vehicle is called Proteus and it will be developed with U.S. Navy requirements for unmanned underwater vehicles in mind.

"Our team has overlapping competencies, proven products and ongoing efforts that will benefit this development," said David P. Kelly, president and chief executive officer of Bluefin Robotics.

"By combining the strengths of our organizations, we can field a vehicle that will meet the Navy's needs and take UUV capabilities to the next level."

The Columbia Group is developing the hull mechanical and electrical systems for the vehicle, which will use Bluefin's autonomy technology.

The Proteus will be powered by a Bluefin system that features a Battelle battery charging system.

The companies plan an at-sea demonstration of the UUV this year.

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