FarSounder Awarded a Department of Homeland Security SBIR

FarSounder has been awarded a Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) contract to demonstrate the feasibility of a low cost 3D sonar system for underwater threat detection to enhance the nation's port security efforts. For this SBIR project FarSounder will develop the concept design at their Providence, Rhode Island facility. The resulting system could provide the first underwater port security system practical for use in all US ports and along extensive areas of US coastlines and inland waterways. This would significantly enhance the security of critical infrastructure facilities. Future benefits for commercial applications would include a low-cost on-board security sonar system for commercial cargo ships, oil tankers, passenger vessels and large recreational boats.

"This is great news for one of Rhode Island's cutting-edge small businesses," said Congressman Langevin (D-RI). "Port security is a critical component of our homeland security efforts,and FarSounder's work on underwater threat detection is making important contributions in this field. I would like to congratulate FarSounder on this award, and I look forward to working with them to build additional federal support for this project."

"Since its inception in 2001, FarSounder's revolutionary 3-D sonar imaging technology has put this local company at the forefront of marine navigation. With this grant by the Department of Homeland Security, FarSounder will be able to begin utilizing their sonar technology to develop an effective underwater threat detection system," said Senator Lincoln Chafee(R-RI), member of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs. "I am proud to see these types of awards coming home to Rhode Island - both to bring revenues into our state, improving our economy, and to place Rhode Island's small businesses on the cutting-edge of protecting the citizens within our borders," he continued.

"I am pleased to learn the experts in the area of National Defense and Homeland Security are endorsing the benefits of the FarSounder technology, " said Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy (D-RI). "Not only will the mechanism provide the first underwater port security system for our country's ports and waterways, the security sonar system can also be used onboard commercial cargo ships and other large vessels to help detect and avoid endangered marine mammals. I commend the contribution FarSounder is making in the area of marine safety and look forward to its continued success in Rhode Island, " added Kennedy.

"We are very excited to be offered this opportunity to work with the Department of Homeland Security to enhance the nation's port security efforts," said FarSounder CEO, Cheryl M. Zimmerman. "DHS's emphasis on rapid prototyping of successful technologies fits in well with our company's goals for our advanced sonar technology. We welcome the opportunity to live up to their expectations for our company."

Ms. Zimmerman also expressed thanks to the RI Congressional Delegation for their continued support of FarSounder's efforts to bring high technology research and development projects to Rhode Island.

FarSounder FS-3 sonars are capable of generating a complete 3-dimensional image of the sea floor and in-water objects at navigationally significant ranges with a single ping. This new sonar technology revolutionizes marine navigation, especially in shallow areas, as well as being appropriate for security and defense applications. These systems overcome traditional shallow water sonar limitations such as multi-path. They offer visualization of a clear, easy to understand 3D sonar image. Versions of the sonars can also be used on submarines, remotely operated vehicles (ROV) or autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV).