The system, Sea Fiber Optic Inertial Navigation with Data Distribution (SeaFIND), provides "proven navigation capabilities in a compact and affordable package, making it ideal for applications where low cost as well as reduced size, weight and power requirements are critical", and is the first maritime inertial navigation system to move from the existing ring laser technology to Northrop Grumman’s new enhanced fiber optic gyro technology (eFOG).
“SeaFIND allows us to meet a critical customer need where low size, weight and power requirements, as well as reliable position-keeping performance in GPS-denied environments, are critical,” said Todd Leavitt, vice president, maritime systems, Northrop Grumman.
“This new approach features eFOG technology, which allows us to maintain performance equivalent to our ring laser gyro based systems, but in a much smaller footprint and at a reduced cost.”
The suggested applications for SeaFIND include guidance systems for unmanned underwater vehicles and unmanned surface vehicles, coastal and offshore patrol vessels, as well as small, medium and large surface vessels, and is non ITAR and available for use by domestic and international navies.
The system is designed using a modular system architecture and is comprised of an inertial measurement unit (IMU) and a separate electronics unit (EU) connected via a single cable. Its smaller coil size and denser IMU package allows for flexible installation in tight places.