France launches pilotless mine-hunting vesselBy IANS
Friday, December 10, 2010
PARIS - France has launched the first pilotless vessel to be used in demining operations, the defence ministry has said.
The “mine counter-operations” vessel was launched Thursday in the northwestern waters off the country, Xinhua reported citing a French defence ministry statement.
The unmanned surface vessel (USV) - about 17 metres long and weighing 25 tonnes - will be equipped with a sonar in 2011.
It is expected to demonstrate how unmanned underwater robotic vehicles can replace human work to remove mines from a danger zone, the ministry said.