Maritime Security systems company WatchStander LLC announced that it has completed development of a fully automated system designed to prevent gangs of pirates and other unwanted individuals or groups from boarding ships.
The object of the system is to make it more physically intolerable for the criminals to approach the ship and to persuade them to abort their attacks. The video and data from all incidents will be archived for subsequent transmission to the data centers of the shipowner and WatchStander for training and evidential purposes.
The system is designed to keep the attackers beyond the range of their guns and thereby protect the ship and its crew from potential danger. “What makes our system unique is that it disrupts the attack without burdening the crew in a way that is affordable,” said the company’s president, David Rigsby.
The fully automated WatchStander system, which combines intelligent software with a range of nonlethal countermeasures and is, has been satisfactorily tested on a number of ocean-going ships over the past six months and is now ready to be installed on ships in the commercial fleet.
The system uses a cost-effective high resolution radar to automatically identify surrounding traffic and assess their behavior over time to identify hostile targets. The system then operates non-lethal countermeasures to respond to the threats if they continue to approach the ship.
The system is based on technology developed by the Applied Research Laboratory at Penn State University for use by the US Navy and adapted for use on commercial ships and other maritime installations such as oil-rigs under contract for WatchStander LLC.
WatchStander has an exclusive license from the ARL to use its patented intelligent control technology to develop cost effective solutions of a legal and non-lethal nature, and market them to the commercial shipping and oil and gas industries.
WatchStander will use the services of various maritime installers to put the system on board ships that operate through the high-risk areas and maintain and service them.