22:50 GMT +325 May 2019
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    This July 28, 2008 file photo shows USS Freedom, the first ship in the Navy's new Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) class.

    Pentagon Orders Unmanned Surface Minesweeper for Navy's Littoral Combat Ships

    © AP Photo / Lockheed-Martin via U.S. Navy, File
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    The Pentagon has awarded a contract to Textron Systems to develop an unmanned minesweeper to satisfy the Navy’s need for a "rapid, wide-area coverage mine clearance capability."

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The firm has been awarded a $15 million contract to manufacture the unmanned influence sweep countermeasure mine system deployed from the Navy's Littoral Combat Ships, the Department of Defense said in a press release.

    "Textron Systems, Hunt Valley, Maryland, is being awarded a $14,820,302 contract for the unmanned influence sweep countermeasure mine system," the release stated on Thursday. "The system will satisfy the Navy’s need for a rapid, wide-area coverage mine clearance capability."

    The unmanned surface mine sweeper will be launched from the Navy's Littoral Combat Ships. Its mission is to search for acoustic and magnetic mines.

    The surface vehicle tows a device that sets off sea mines known as influence mines. These types of mines are activated when receiving acoustic or magnetic waves.

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