Three Somalis were convicted this month of piracy, kidnapping and murder for the 2011 shooting deaths of four Americans sailing in the Indian Ocean off Oman. The three could face the death penalty, according to court documents. The men, a total of nineteen were involved, boarded the yacht, held the passengers captive and planned to sail for Somalia, but the two American couples were killed.
Whilst a massive international navy presence has ensured the Somali threat has died down somewhat, frequently this merely re-locates the problem to somewhere else in the oceans and now the West African coastline has become increasingly dangerous.
“From 2008, what we’ve seen is they (pirates) have evolved … and increased their capabilities,” said Cyrus Mody, manager at the International Maritime Bureau in London told CNN in 2011.
There is a tremendous need for early and long-range threat alerts in the maritime environment. The security stakes are high for the yacht crew isolated at sea, day- and night, so response to these threats has increasingly employed military grade equipment.
HGH Infrared Systems’ recently released the Spynel-S, their new mid-wave infrared 360 degree camera ideally suited for maritime applications. The passive, gyro-stabilized Spynel has been proven at sea with Navy during anti-piracy operations. The thermal camera can withstand salty sea sprays and foggy weather and is extremely useful for navigation purposes.
With an early RHIB alert on asymmetric threats of 12 kilometers away, the Spynel-S can help yachts around the world protect themselves from pirates and other threats.
Spynel’s continuously-monitored, ultra wide panoramic field of view ensures that no event is missed, even over extremely large areas in total darkness, or through smoke or inclement weather conditions. Spynel offers cost-effective maritime and port surveillance, airport perimeter security as well as critical infrastructure protection.