Cheetah introduces Kitt catamaran for unmanned ops
Cheetah Marine has introduced its latest 11.2m long cab vessel in support of autonomous and unmanned operations.
Named Kitt, after the 80’s TV show Knightrider’s famous self-steering and nearly indestructible car, the 11.2m catamaran was completed on the Isle of Wight for ASV Global, which specialises in the manufacture and operation of autonomous vessel technology.
When completed, the vessel will be kitted out with an ASView Autonomous Control System which is a leading conversion package providing autonomy for manned vessels.
Cat 2 MCA
Kitt left the Cheetah Marine workshops as a Cat 2 MCA coded vessel for 12 persons and is powered by twin 350hp Mercury Verado outboards.
Top speeds during sea trials exceeded 40 knots with cruising speeds from 20-23 knots at 3000rpm.
The large 3.5 x 3.5m wheelhouse provides generous space for a variety of tasks. The starboard hull area is assigned for the autonomous hardware keeping the cabin area clear for two full length survey work tops with storage for computer installation below.
The Cheetah will be crewed throughout seatrials in the Solent test area while the unmanned, autonomous and ROV aspects are being developed.
This project, part funded by the Solent LEP will also provide Kitt as a low cost, test platform for small industry to trial and demonstrate their innovations within a controlled environment.
Considerable interest has been shown from a multitude of development areas including communications, UAV and specialist survey and navigation applications.
Cheetah will be exhibiting a 7.9m Hydrographic Survey boat complete with moonpool and hydropod at Seawork this year.
Visit Cheetah Marine on the quay at VA33, VA32 at Seawork International 2018.
By Anne-Marie Causer
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