Raytheon Anschütz has developed an innovative system solution for OPV’s, smaller Naval and Coast Guard vessels. At Euronaval, the Synapsis Command Bridge is launched as a combination of commercial-off-the-shelf navigation with Command & Control capabilities to a new, homogeneous bridge system.
The Synapsis Command Bridge aims to provide a solution that not only includes the Synapsis Integrated Navigation capabilities but also transfers enhanced Command & Control (C2) capabilities from the Raytheon Anschütz’ SmartBlue surveillance system to a new sea-based application.
Thomas Lehmann, System Engineer at Raytheon Anschütz, explains: “The Command Bridge comes as a scalable ‘off-the-shelf’ solution which is standardized to save unnecessary non-recurring engineering costs whilst at the same time remaining flexible enough to accommodate different sensors and weapon systems appropriate for different missions. Smaller vessels such as OPV’s and Fast Attack Crafts without requirements for a dedicated combat information center can be easily equipped to handle a variety of threat scenarios and missions efficiently and effectively.”
The entire system is built upon the same Raytheon Anschütz OASIS (Open Architecture Software for Integrated Systems) framework. The bridge system is equipped with multifunctional workstations that unify the radar, ECDIS, conning, and C2 to single service oriented applications with a standardized user look and feel for monitoring, control, data and alert management. Whereas the tasks of radar, ECDIS (or WECDIS), and conning display are essential for navigation and IMO compliance, the C2 including electro-optic sensor (EOS) and weapon control significantly enhance the capabilities of the new system solution.
Thereby the C2 system processes charts, tracks and sensor data and provides the operator with advanced situational awareness and capabilities for detection, identification and tracking of targets of any size in the vessels environment. Within the Synapsis Command Bridge the C2 essentially acts as a dashboard for sensor fusion, tactical options and weapons control that can be readily adapted and scaled to suit the vessel type and mission.
The Synapsis Command Bridge also includes flexible interfaces for rapid integration of sensors to detect, track and identify contacts as a premise for military situational awareness and surveillance requirements. This helps to realize customer-specific solutions and to add, replace or remove individual sub-systems and components - such as small target trackers, 2D radars, ESMs or sonars – with changing operational needs.
“Our Command Bridge concept is a network based solution that incorporates core ship electronics systems in a standardized but flexible manner that allows for quick adaptation to customer requirements. The level of flexibility offered with the Synapsis Command Bridge architecture provides significant advantages over less integrated approaches, which often only interface separate, non-integrated systems without using consistent and unified system architecture”, Mr. Lehmann concludes.
A good example for the requirement of a Command Bridge is the SeaStriker 22, which has been recently launched by shipbuilder RiverHawk Fast Sea Frames of Tampa / Florida.
The SeaStriker 22 is a twenty-two meter fast patrol and interdiction craft designed to counter asymmetric threats and to support various littoral security missions such as anti-piracy, offshore and near-shore interdiction, protection of harbors and offshore structures, anti-smuggling operations, police duties as well as search and rescue tasks. Whereas the ships needs to cope with various, potential rapidly changing missions and also to interact with other afloat and airborne platforms, as well as C2 elements ashore, there is the need for an integrated bridge solution that takes limited bridge space and small crew size into account.
The vessel is equipped with a first fully operational Command Bridge. The bridge currently consists of Raytheon Anschütz navigation sensors, autopilot and multifunctional workstations for radar, ECDIS and conning. The workstations fully integrate the C2 system which includes the electro-optical sensor video and is ready to share data with further on-board and on-shore systems.
At Euronaval 2012 Raytheon Anschütz demonstrates the Synapsis Command Bridge as part of the Raytheon Company exhibit at booth F39-F41, US Pavilion.