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27 Mar 02. Raytheon’s Naval & Maritime Integrated Systems (N&MIS) and Thales Underwater Systems (TUS) have agreed to cooperate for potential further upgrades to the AN/SQQ-32 Minehunting Sonars currently in service on the United States Navy Avenger and Osprey Class Surface Mine Countermeasure (SMCM) ships. The two companies expect to sign a teaming agreement by June 1, 2002.

By leveraging ongoing high-frequency, wide-band programs at the two companies, the Raytheon-Thales team is uniquely qualified to improve and enhance shallow- and deep-water search performance against evolving new threats.
The Raytheon AN/SQQ-32 independently displays search and classification information, using separate classification transducers in a stabilized variable depth body. Thales supplies the Classification Arrays to Raytheon for these sonars. With photo-quality resolution, AN/SQQ-32 can discriminate between actual mines and mine-like contacts. This capability greatly decreases false target reporting, and increases classification capability.

Proposed enhancements to the AN/SQQ-32 include incorporating the latest high-frequency, wide-band sonar technology to enhance the sonar’s effectiveness against increasingly stealthy mines in shallow waters.

“This is an excellent example of a partnership that leverages the strengths of two leading technology companies for the benefit of our customers,” said Dan Smith, Vice President and General Manager of N&MIS.
“This enlargement of the cooperation between our two Companies builds on the synergies gained from our previous successful partnership,” said Mel Purvis, Minewarfare Director for Thales Underwater Systems.

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