iXblue’s FLS brings real-time detection and classification capabilities to naval forces

23 March.

  Reading time : 2 min.

iXblue, a global leader in the design and manufacturing of innovative solutions devoted to navigation, positioning and underwater imaging, will be showcasing its new generation mine and obstacle avoidance sonar, the FLS Series, during EURONAVAL 2018. 


The FLS Series is a 3D multi-beam Forward Looking Sonar developed for multi-purpose applications. Integrating an advanced Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU), the FLS Series provides a clear and precisely geo-referenced picture of the surrounding environment. Thanks to its unique three-dimensional coverage of the water column, bathymetric profile as well as robust bottom classification, iXblue’s FLS Series offers highly precise real-time detection and classification capabilities. It is especially suited for applications such as mine and obstacle avoidance, real-time mapping and safe navigation, as well as rapid environmental assessment (REA).

“Leveraging iXblue’s expertise in navigation and subsea imaging, this new FLS technology offers highly reliable long-range detection (up to 650 meters for a -15 dB target) and safe navigation capability for all kinds of naval platform.” explains Julien Guichard Defense Program Manager at iXblue. “Thanks to its innovative electronically steerable Dual antennas, the FLS provides unrivaled coverage of the entire water column, from surface to sea bottom. Each detection is then mapped in real-time and in 3D in iXblue’s user-friendly ECDIS (Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems), that can also centralize and simultaneously display information gathered by multiple FLS, thanks to its Ethernet network architecture. This is a particularly interesting feature for REA missions for instance, as naval forces will be able to send in a fleet of unmanned vessels to conduct the mission with more flexibility and safety.”

Highly performant, the FLS Series is available in a compact version for portable and lightweight integration, or in a long-range, deep-water configuration. Fully scalable, it can be fitted on any surface vessel, submarine or unmanned platform (both surface and subsea) and benefits from iXblue’s extensive experience in integrating its civilian version on vessels. 

“All in all, our FLS Series truly brings superiority to naval forces as it provides crews with an intelligible representation of their full surrounding environment, which in turns helps them make informed decisions in a reduced timeframe.” Continues Julien Guichard. “This is a real asset to conduct more efficient and safer operations, keeping both humans and strategic vessels out of harm’s way.”