The ASEMAR project objective is to develop an autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) for maritime security dedicated to the monitoring of sea bed. This 1-ton class AUV is equipped with the best technologies in imaging and in autonomy of navigation.
The mission of this vehicle is the detection of the immersed dangers. Its spectrum of use is very wide: from the search of sunk ships or cargoes of hazardous or polluting materials lost offshore, to the observation of seismic faults or geologic movements.
The ASEMAR project has been carried out by THALES and ECA, THALES being the System Design Authority and ECA being the expert in vehicle design, within the frame of the French Poles of Competitiveness (Pôle Mer Bretagne). Academic partners (ENSIETA, Ecole Navale, ISEN, UBO in Brest) are also involved.
Sea trials have been conducted from beginning of 2010 until end of April 2010, at first in the South of France, near Toulon, to validate the behavior of the vehicle and its components in various conditions, and then in the West of France, near Brest, to validate the sonar performance when integrated in the vehicle and the global system performances. During these sea trials, the AUV has demonstrated its capacity to perform large missions in full autonomy.