U.S. Navy Chooses VideoRay Mission Specialist Defender as Standard for High-Performance Man-Portable Underwater Robot

U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communications Specialist 1st Class Ryan Seelbach

VideoRay, a rapidly growing underwater technology company, announced a $16.1 million order for Mission Specialist Defender underwater remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) and related components for the U.S. Navy’s Maritime Expeditionary Standoff Response (MESR) program.

This brings the U.S. Navy’s total procurement of Mission Specialist Defender vehicles and accessories to $49 million since they entered into a Production-Other Transaction Agreement (P-OTA) with VideoRay.

VideoRayWith this order, the U.S. Navy continues their efforts to procure and equip Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) units with the Mission Specialist Defender as the base platform for the MK20 Defender ROV program. This program uses advanced technology provided by these remotely operated underwater vehicles to locate and neutralize underwater mines, such as those being laid near Ukraine, and in other maritime war zones.

“VideoRay is proud to continue to serve our U.S. Navy customers and to have been chosen as the production partner for the MESR program,” said Chris Gibson, VideoRay’s Chief Executive Officer. “The Mission Specialist Defender, from which the U.S. Navy’s MK20 Defender ROV derives, offers modularity and an open systems architecture allowing easy integration of 3rd-party sensors and payloads. Our product provides our customers with industry-leading performance in size, weight, and power (SWAP) for its class with a proven record of reliability. And all of this is delivered in a man-portable package capable of performing a variety of demanding missions in the most challenging underwater environments.”

With the MESR Program, the Navy plans to upgrade the baseline vehicle with incremental updates to sensors, autonomy, tools and manipulators in order to provide enhanced capability to the EOD operator, further increasing standoff and decreasing risk. Among the recent uses of the U.S. Navy’s fielded Mission Specialist Defender units was the recovery of the recently downed high-altitude balloon off the coast of South Carolina. For critical missions like this, or locating and rendering safe underwater mines, the Defender’s portability, power, versatility, and reliability are unmatched.

VideoRay has established a growing network of authorized dealers and service centers to support international and commercial sales and offers an extensive online knowledge base with training materials and helpful references for all our products. VideoRay offers training from our headquarters in Pottstown, PA, and support facility in San Diego, CA, along with mobile training teams capable of providing services to our customers around the world.

For information about VideoRay’s Mission Specialist Defender underwater robotic system, visit: https://videoray.com/products/mission-specialist-defender. The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.


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