Updated on July 25, 2012
The Protector unmanned surface vehicle (USV) is an Israeli-developed unmanned naval vessel employing cutting edge technology. The Protector USV is nine meters long, weighing about 4,000 Kg (8,800 lbs) and capable of reaching speeds up to 92 Kph (57 mph).
Stealthy and highly maneuverable, The Protector can conduct a wide spectrum of critical missions, without exposing personnel and capital assets to unnecessary risk. The vessel can operate autonomously running predetermined routes and courses, or it can be controlled remotely from shore several miles away.
Deployed by the Israeli Navy since 2009, the weapons system aboard The Protector USV is based on Rafael‘s Typhoon remote-controlled, stabilized weapon station, capable of operating various small caliber guns. The highly accurate, stabilized weapon station boasts an excellent hit-to-kill ratio.
Rafael recently unveiled a new version of the Protector USV that is longer, faster, more reliable and is equipped with a high-pressure water hose for non-lethal missions such as preventing flotillas from sailing to the Gaza Strip. Unlike the previous model that only had a single engine, the new model has two engines — should one fail, the other will initiate.
The high-tech equipment installed on the unmanned vessel, such as a highly accurate, stabilized weapons station, detection radar and a targeting system with day and night capabilities enables the Protector USV to accomplish a wide range of operational functions.