GeoSpectrum Launches New Compact Version of its Towed Reelable Active Passive Sonar (TRAPS) for USVs

GeoSpectrum Technologies Inc, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Elbit Systems Ltd, announced a new compact version of its Towed Reelable Active Passive Sonar (TRAPS), suitable for Unmanned Surface Vessels (USVs).

Named TRAPS-USV, this lighter-weight variant is designed to fit on almost any size vessel including patrol boats and USVs while retaining full active sonar acoustic capabilities and providing groundbreaking low-frequency active submarine detection off smaller platforms.

“We are proud and excited to offer the world’s most compact LF active variable depth sonar, suitable for even small class USVs. We understand that unmanned systems can and will play a significant role in modern ASW operations and are confident that TRAPS-USV is a significant game-changer in this respect. TRAPS-USV is yet another step in the TRAPS innovation to provide high-performance ASW capabilities in a compact form and affordable costs. We are proud to work with Curtiss-Wright/Indal our partners for the reduced weight winch and handling system”, said Paul Yeatman, President of GeoSpectrum.

With overall system weight reduced to approx. 40% of the already compact TRAPS, TRAPS-USV allows surface vessels and USVs as small as 12 meters long, to be equipped with a powerful, long-range active sonar ASW capability. This enables the USVs to perform anti-submarine warfare (ASW) operations on the move performing independent missions or augmenting manned ASW assets including opportunities for advanced techniques such as bi-static and multi-static operation.

Similar to its “larger brother” TRAPS (with installed or containerized configurations), TRAPS-USV is a Low Frequency (LF) variable-depth sonar intended for detection, classification, localization, and tracking of submarines in ASW operations. TRAPS’ unique advantage is that its’ projector array is reelable and stows on the winch drum with the receive array and tow cable. This unique feature eliminates the need for a dedicated active over-boarding system saving weight, space, complexity, and cost.

Both GeoSpectrum TRAPS and TRAPS-USV also have the unique capability to swap out and exchange active sonar projectors allowing O-level adaptation of the system to different active sonar frequencies in the 2 to 10 kHz range. The containerized version of TRAPS first went to sea, onboard Royal Canadian Navy ships in 2019.

In commonality with TRAPS, sonar processing for TRAPS-USV is performed by GeoSpectrum’s sensor-agnostic RecView sonar processing capability which was designed for remote / distributed operation.

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