Singapore unveiled on Tuesday a fleet of remote-controlled vessels, which Defence Minister Teo Chee Hean said would give the city-state a high-tech boost in the battle against maritime piracy and terrorism.
The two-tonne Spartan Scout Unmanned Surface Vessels (USV), which can be operated from a main warship, can be individually configured to carry out a range of missions including surveillance and anti-submarine warfare.
Teo, who witnessed a "live" demonstration of the Spartan's capabilities, said the remote-controlled vessels would strengthen Singapore's anti-piracy measures.
"The USVs allows ships to deploy such a vessel without getting the men into too close contact with a suspicious boat, which may have undesirable intentions," Teo told reporters after the demonstration.
Singapore is developing the Spartan in conjunction with the US Navy and expects to begin testing the vessels in local waters this year, the defence ministry said.
A less-equipped USV fleet that Singapore bought, the Protector series, is already in operation and was recently deployed by the Singapore navy during a deployment near Iraq to help US-led forces, according to the defence ministry.
Both fleets were presented to the media on the first day of Imdex Asia 2005, a regional maritime conference showcasing the latest maritime defence technologies and products of 23 countries.
Speaking earlier at the conference's opening ceremony, Teo, referring to the USVs as an example, said regional navies should engage in technological collaboration to combat pirates and potential terrorists lurking in the region's waters.
"We need to develop new technological applications for more effective ways of carrying out our maritime security missions," he said.
"In particular, unmanned surface vehicles can offer safer and more effective responses to maritime threats."
Teo did not say how much the USVs cost nor exactly how many Protectors the Singapore navy had, describing the fleet only as "small". No details were given on how far the USVs can operate from the main warship.
All rights reserved. © 2005 Agence France-Presse. Sections of the information displayed on this page (dispatches, photographs, logos) are protected by intellectual property rights owned by Agence France-Presse. As a consequence, you may not copy, reproduce, modify, transmit, publish, display or in any way commercially exploit any of the content of this section without the prior written consent of Agence France-Presse.
Subscribe To SpaceDaily Express
Walking Tall Like A Human
Moffett Field CA (SPX) May 16, 2005
If you nudge this robot, it steps forward and catches its balance much like a human.
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2016 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.|