ANNAPOLIS, Md., June 19 (UPI) -- Japan's navy has received the first of four AQS-24A airborne mine-hunting vehicles from Northrop Grumman for use on MCH-101 helicopters.
The AQS-24A and its Northrop Grumman predecessors are the only operational airborne mine-hunting search systems used by the U.S. Navy. It is a towed, high-speed, mine-hunting system.
"This first delivery is a major milestone in the development of Japan's airborne mine-hunting capability," said Tom Jones, vice president of Northrop Grumman's Undersea Systems business unit. "The effort marks the first complete build of an AQS-24A since eight were delivered to the U.S. Navy in 1995. It demonstrates that the configuration baseline is relevant to modern threats, can be rapidly produced, and is suitable for other international and domestic customers."
The AQS-24A contains a laser line scanner for precision optical identification of underwater mines and other objects. The system capability includes simultaneous operation of the sonar and laser for improved area coverage, while its advanced navigation controls and processing provide highly accurate target positioning information.
The company said it will soon deliver the first of four Airborne Laser Mine Detection Systems to Japan for operation in conjunction with the AQS-24A.
ALMDS is a laser-based, light detection and ranging sensor system that detects, classifies and localizes near-surface, mine-like objects from above the waterline.