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May 19, 2023

Teledyne Slocum Glider Deployed from US Navy Helicopter

(Photo: Teledyne Marine)

(Photo: Teledyne Marine)

An undersea glider was launched from a U.S. Navy helicopter—in what is said to be the first successful autonomous undersea vehicle (AUV) deployment from an aircraft.

The Teledyne-owned Slocum glider, configured with Littoral Battlespace Sensing – Glider (LBS-G) mine countermeasures (MCM) sensors, was launched from the ramp of U.S. Navy helicopter flying “low and slow” over shallow waters. Teledyne Marine said it provided Slocum glider piloting and technical support in theater.

 "We are excited to be a part of another series of firsts! In this instance, the first launch from a helicopter and the first-ever successful glider deployment from an aircraft. Teledyne Marine takes pride in our continued innovation and support of the U.S. Navy as it expands the operational envelope of underwater gliders," said Dr. Thomas Altshuler, Senior Vice President, Global Maritime Defense Strategy and Business Development Teledyne Technologies.

The MCM Commander now has the capability for rapid and widespread glider deployment by Task Force elements under direct, tactical control, eliminating the dependency on strategically tasked oceanographic ships. The gliders provide critical environmental information to optimize acoustic and optical MCM sensor performance.

The Teledyne Slocum glider is a long-endurance AUV used for multiple persistent operational missions, including oceanographic data collection. Teledyne has delivered over 1,000 Slocum gliders to a global customer base. The Slocum glider is the backbone of the US Navy LBS-G program, with over 210 delivered since 2009. The Naval Oceanographic Office (NAVOCEANO) pilots the LBS gliders and includes collected data supporting Navy operations. Until this successful helicopter deployment, LBS gliders were almost exclusively launched and recovered by the T-AGS 60 class multi-mission ocean survey ships.

The February 2024 edition of Marine Technology Reporter is focused on Oceanographic topics and technologies.
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