SAFEHAVEN Marine, the Cobh-based boatbuilding company, has revealed footage its new Barracuda vessel undergoing a high-speed boarding trial with the Irish Navy.
The Barracuda is a high speed, low radar cross-section interceptor designed specifically for military and law enforcement roles.
One of the boat's most unique features is that a range of both lethal and non-lethal weapons can be concealed below deck and raised up through hatches only when required during conflict.
The Barracuda is also capable of operating with a high degree of invisibility to any opponent’s radar.
It recently underwent testing with the help of the Irish Navy and the Irish Maritime and Energy Research Cluster.
In a series of trials, the Barracuda was brought repeatedly alongside one of the naval vessels with the speeds being increased in each instance reaching a maximum of 20 knots.
According to Safehaven Marine, the vessel performed well remaining stable while alongside the naval vessel and able to break away easily.
Separately, construction is continuing at pace by Safehaven Marine on an 18-metre long Wildcat 60 catamaran for the UK Ministry of Defence which will be used for a range of military purposes.
She will be an HMS class Royal Navy vessel, replacing the currently in service HMS Gleaner.
The Wildcat is capable of operating offshore for seven days with 12 crew on board. Such long duration voyages are made possible by the integration of a watermaker converting up to 1,300 litres of salt water into fresh water and supplemented by an 800-litre fresh water capacity - with a 600-litre black water tank also fitted onboard.
While the worth of the contract is confidential, Frank Kowalski, managing director of Safehaven Marine, said it was a significant contract win for the company.
“It certainly will be an important contract,” he said.
“We're supplying the largest vessel in a fleet of 38 boats. The boat is the most prestigious of those and it's great news for us,” he added.
The contract was awarded to the Irish company by main contractors Atlas Elektronik (AEUK).
More pics and video are available on Safehaven Marine's Facebook page.