Lockheed Martin has announced who will build its latest autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) – the Marlin Mk3. The new vehicle boasts some impressive capabilities, including an operational depth of up to 4,000 m (13,000 ft).
AUVs are becoming more and more capable as the years go by, and are now extremely useful underwater tools utilized for numerous applications. Back in November 2014, a SeaBED AUV was used to map more than 500,000 square meters (5.4 million sq ft) of the Antarctic, showing that sea ice may be thicker than we thought. More recently, a Gavia AUV was used to study the distribution of algae on the underside of ice.
Lockheed Martin is no stranger to unmanned vehicles, and clearly understands the potential of such craft, announcing today that SeaRobotics will manufacture its brand new Marlin Mk3 survey and inspection AUV.