ECA Group today announced it won a contract worth more than 20 million euros for the modernization of three Alkmaar mine countermeasures vessels belonging to the Latvian Naval Forces.
The vessels were acquired from the Royal Netherlands Navy in 2006. These vessels require a modernisation of their mine hunting system, the company said in a release September 28.
These vessels will be delivered with a Mine Warfare Data Center successively in 2021, 2023 and 2024.
Under this contract, ECA Group will replace the conventional detection system based on a hull sonar for mines with a smaller unmanned system consisting of the underwater drones AUV A18-M for detection and underwater robots Seascan MK2 and K-STER C for identification and clearance of the mines.
ECA Group will modify the vessels with the support of its subsidiary Mauric, specialized in naval architecture, and Latvian partners, in order to install these modern mine countermeasures systems. At the end of the contract, the Latvian Naval Forces will thus be able to carry out underwater mine clearance operations without the ship entering the minefield (Stand-Off concept).This contract, like all mine warfare contracts, will entail maintenance and sales of consumable over a period of 10 to 20 years.
The Latvian Naval Forces will acquire a compacte version of the UMIS system. As ECA Group’s UMIS system is scalable, in the future, the marine will be able to supplement its unmanned system progressively, depending on its needs, while maintaining the compatibility with the existing, modernised equipment and new, integrated drones.