12 September 2023 – Leading UK ship and fleet protection specialist SEA has launched Ancilia, a high-performance trainable decoy launcher system to protect surface platforms from increasingly advanced missile and torpedo threats.
Ancilia is a highly modular and flexible maritime countermeasures solution delivering effective and rapid protection against modern dynamic threats, such as hypersonic and ballistic missiles. A step-change in decoy launcher technology from traditional fixed solutions, Ancilia’s trainable nature, removes the need to manoeuvre the vessel and it’s relative small size enables it to be fitted to a wide range of maritime platforms.
Capable of a rapid movement and offering support for a multitude of surface and subsurface countermeasure effectors, the system can counter a wide range of threats quickly and effectively. With a decoy-agnostic open architecture, the system can launch any standard 130mm NATO decoy, and other calibres of effectors, and can be retrofitted onto existing platforms and integrated with existing Combat Management Systems (CMS) and third-party Electronic Support Systems (ESM). Drawing upon on SEA’s Combat System expertise, Ancilia uses modern electronics, mechanical systems and software and requires minimal deck footprint in comparison to other systems of its nature.
Ancilia has been developed by SEA, leveraging a long history of decoy launcher expertise, including providing systems to the UK Royal Navy and is based on the company’s in-service launcher system technology. SEA won a contract in 2022 to update the torpedo launcher and countermeasures systems for the Royal Navy’s Type 23 frigates, meaning that its countermeasures systems are in service across the Type 23 frigates, Royal Fleet Auxiliary, Albion, and Type 45 destroyers. SEA’s renowned Torpedo Launcher System is the preferred system of the UK Royal Navy and many other navies worldwide, including in South America, Southeast Asia, and the Indo Pacific regions.
Richard Flitton, Managing Director at SEA, said: “With the speed and sophistication of missiles increasing and the window a surface platform has to respond becoming smaller, navies require the ability to rapidly and accurately deliver decoys that protect themselves against threats such as hypersonic and ballistic missiles. Ancilia is a gamechanger in maritime countermeasure technology that provides the manoeuvrability and speed of response that existing, fixed solutions cannot, and due to its compact design, can be fitted a variety of in-service vessels without the need for major mechanical modifications.”
Fellow Cohort Group company Chess Dynamics, a leader in training mechanisms including optical and tracking systems, has provided the trainable base for Ancilia, meaning SEA has incorporated in-service technology, proven through 15+ years of operational service in harsh naval environments where high reliability and low maintenance requirements are key.
Mark Byfield – Vice President Strategic Business Development at Chess Dynamics, said: “We are proud to have contributed our proven expertise in designing high-precision positioning platforms to the development of the new Ancilia trainable decoy launcher system. Working in close collaboration with our fellow Cohort colleagues in SEA, the joint team have successfully developed an advanced high-performance system that is set to fulfil a critical role in protecting modern warships from new and evolving hostile threats.”
Photo courtesy SEA