Defense Secretary Mark Esper tours the avenger class minesweeper USS Devastator, docked at Naval Support Activity Bahrain on Oct. 28, 2020. DoD Photo
At the beginning of the year, the Navy and Marine Corps sent a new fleet plan to Pentagon leaders that called for relying on smaller ships and unmanned vessels to meet future missions and defeat future adversaries. The Pentagon rejected the plan.
Nine-months later, Pentagon leaders reached the same conclusion: the Navy needed to be more distributed and weighted towards small combatants and unmanned craft.
What did that additional effort really get the sea services? Not much, according to some officials involved in both processes.
With the Pentagon pitching a future naval force design that calls for as many as 240 unmanned and optionally manned ships on the surface and under the sea, a natural question is: what will they all do? Read More
USS Chancellorsville (CG-62), left, is underway alongside the Navy’s forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) during a fueling-at-sea. Ronald Reagan, the flagship of Carrier Strike Group 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the collective maritime interests of its allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific region on June 30, 2019. US Navy Photo
Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly has made a bold call: the Navy should reach a fleet of 355 ships – both manned and unmanned – within a decade. Read More
Echo Voyager is the newest member to join Boeing’s unmanned undersea vehicle family. The 51-foot vehicle is designed to stay underwater for months at a time. Boeing photo.
The Navy selected Boeing and Lockheed Martin to pursue the Extra Large Unmanned Underwater Vehicle (XLUUV) program, which will test the Navy’s ability to manage a rapid-acquisition project and the Navy-industry team’s ability to develop and integrate an unmanned system that operates completely independently of manned ships. Read More
Four F-35C Lightning II joint strike fighters fly in formation over Naval Air Station Lemoore in January 2016. US Navy photo.
The Navy has asked lawmakers for additional aircraft, warfighting capability improvements and facilities upgrades if more money were to become available to the service, with the release of its Fiscal Year 2018 Unfunded Priorities List. Read More
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency tests its Sea Hunter unmanned vehicle — the technology demonstration vessel it designed, developed and built through its anti-submarine warfare continuous trail unmanned vessel program, or ACTUV — in Portland, Ore., prior to an April 7 commissioning ceremony. DARPA photo.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — If the Navy wants to pursue the key tenets of three recently completed Future Fleet Architecture studies – a distributed and networked fleet that relies on unmanned vehicles and electromagnetic warfare tools to survive and win in a highly contested environment – it will need to quickly invest in technologies that allow U.S. forces to complete a targeting faster and stop the enemy from doing so at all, lead participants from the three studies told lawmakers. Read More