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A method and apparatus for securing a surface water vessel to a floating station. The surface water vessel may be an unmanned surface vehicle, and the floating station may be attached to a larger parent ship. According to the invention, the surface water vessel includes a forwardly projecting elongated probe and the floating station includes a receiver having a receiver opening for receiving the elongated probe therein. The elongated probe includes a spherical tip having a circumferential groove. The receiver includes movable spheres that are moved into engagement with the circumferential groove, thereby locking the probe within the receiver. This locking arrangement secures the surface water vessel to the floating station.