Double Eagle (mine disposal vehicle)

The Double Eagle is a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) built by the Swedish defence company Saab Underwater Systems AB and used for the disposal of naval mines.[1]


As of 2009, four versions of the ROV have been designed.[1][2]

The original version was named the Sea Eagle, and was a militarised variant of the civilian Sea Owl ROV.[1] This unit was 1.3 metres (4 ft 3 in) long, 0.76 metres (2 ft 6 in) wide, and 0.4 metres (1 ft 4 in) high, could travel at 3 knots (5.6 km/h; 3.5 mph), and dive to 500 metres (1,600 ft).[1] These ROVs saw service with the Swedish Navy from 1984 onwards.[1]

The second version, named the Double Eagle, is larger, measuring 1.9 metres (6 ft 3 in) in length, 1.3 metres (4 ft 3 in) in width, and 0.8 metres (2 ft 7 in) in height.[1] The ROV weighs 400 kilograms (880 lb), can dive to 500 metres (1,600 ft), and travel at 5 knots (9.3 km/h; 5.8 mph).[1]

Current models

The Double Eagle Mark II is larger but lighter than the first Double Eagle.[1] Measuring 2.1 metres (6 ft 11 in) long, 1.3 metres (4 ft 3 in) wide, and 0.5 metres (1 ft 8 in) high, the unit weighs 340 kilograms (750 lb), dives to 500 metres (1,600 ft), and can reach 6 knots (11 km/h; 6.9 mph).[1] The Mark II entered service in 1994.[2]

The Mark III is 80 centimetres (31 in) longer and 130 kilograms (290 lb) heavier than its predecessor.[2]

The ROV's payload can consist of scanning sonar, echo locations, doppler logs, or self-navigation systems.[2] All Double Eagles are equipped with an extendable manipulator arm, which is commonly used to place a small explosive charge on a mine.[1] The ROV can be modified to double as a self-propelled variable depth sonar: the Mark II Double Eagles fitted to the French Navy's Tripartite class minehunters have been altered to carry a Thales TSM 2022 sonar, while a similar upgrade is to occur to the Mark III units being acquired for the Tripartites of the Royal Netherlands Navy.[2]

The Double Eagle Mark II uses two 5 kilowatt brushless electric motors for main propulsion, and six 0.4 kilowatt brushless electric motors for fine manoeuvering.[3] Mark III ROVs have four 7 kilowatt brushless electric motors as main thrusters. Double Eagles can operate in any orientation.[1]


Mark II

 Royal Australian Navy

 Royal Danish Navy

 Finnish Navy

 French Navy

 Swedish Navy[2]

Mark III

 Belgian Navy

 Royal Netherlands Navy

 Swedish Navy


  1. Fletcher, Worldwide Undersea MCM Vehicle Technologies
  2. Fish & Hollosi, Demining the deep
  3. Clarke, Magnetic signature of brushless electric motors, p. 1
  4. Scott, Flexing a snap-to-fit fleet


  • Clarke, David (2006). Magnetic Signature of Brushless Electric Motors (PDF). Fishermans Bend, VIC: Defence Science and Technology Organisation. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 September 2011. Retrieved 30 January 2010.
  • Fish, Tim; Hollosi, Charles (1 June 2009). "Demining the deep: unmanned underwater vehicles". Jane's Defence Weekly. Jane's Information Group.
  • Fletcher, Barbara (March 2000). Worldwide Undersea MCM Vehicle Technologies (PDF). San Diego, CA: Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center. Retrieved 30 January 2010.
  • Scott, Richard (31 October 2001). "Flexing a snap-to-fit fleet". Jane's Defence Weekly. Jane's Information Group.
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