US - Naval Discussions and Articles

Discussion in 'Americas' started by Parthy, Nov 23, 2010.

  1. Parthy

    Parthy Air Warrior Senior Member

    Aug 18, 2010
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    U.S. Navy creating robotic warship to tirelessly hunt submarines


    The USS Port Royale, the kind of Ticonderoga-class missile cruiser that can be outfitted to hunt subs.

    When a submarine shows up on the scene, it's a game-changer in terms of naval warfare. Unless a ship has the capabilities to detect a sub — let alone take it out — it's pretty much at the submersible's mercy. With that in mind, the Navy and DARPA are creating a robotic warship that could chase a submarine down to the ends of the Earth.

    Known as ACTUVs (which stands for — and take a breath before you say this — Anti-submarine warfare Continuous Trail Unmanned Vessel), the autonomous craft would be equipped with sonar sensors and communication equipment so that it could track a sub and constantly relay its position to friendly vessels and sub-hunters. It would also use its sensors and onboard AI to plot its course so that it steers around other ships, not into them.

    This would fill a role that's normally a dangerous one for a fleet, which would employ a faster, smaller vessel such as a frigate to pinpoint a sub using sonar or accompanying aircraft, all the while doing its best to stay out of range of the sub's torpedoes. Once dialed in by a ACTUV, a specialized anti-sub warship such as the USS Port Royale, pictured above, could go in for the kill if needed.

    If the submarine did happen to destroy the pursuing ACTUV, it would actually only create more problems for it. Not only would there be no loss of life, the burning wreck would be just as handy in marking the last position of the submersible, meaning it would have to expend more its limited resources in getting out of the area instead of carrying on with its mission.
  3. Patriot

    Patriot Senior Member Senior Member

    Apr 11, 2010
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    Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India
    New Missile to Extend Offensive, Defensive Capabilities of U.S. Navy

    The U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA) has launched the development of next generation Aegis missiles, to enhance sea and land-based missile defense systems toward the next decade. Photo" MDA

    The U.S. military is embarking on several new missile development programs promising to change the rules of air- and naval warfare as it is fought today. Many of the new programs are tailored for forward deployment with the naval surface fleet, with the majority of new missiles to be deployed in and fired from Vertical Launch Systems used on U.S. Navy surface ships, introducing new capabilities and extended reach for surface combatants. With these innovations the VLS is proving once again the success of the modular design approach pursued by the Navy, enabling the service to extend the life of its combatants without major changes to the hardware and with minimal down time for the vessels.

    While being developed as a naval weapon system, Next Generation AEGIS Missile (NGAM) is about to become the mainstay of the missile defense network to protect the European continent. The recent decision by NATO members to extend current radars and future missile defense capabilities into a European-wide network will rely initially on U.S. navy assets and at a later phase, on land-based AEGIS systems. Contracts for early development phases of the Standard Missile 3 Block IIB (SM-3 IIB) were awarded in November by the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA). The new missile will enhance the capabilities of future AEGIS cruisers and land-based Aegis systems, defeating ballistic missiles at extended ranges. Three companies were awarded contracts to demonstrate NGAM conceptual designs – Boeing, Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin. While Raytheon, the original manufacturer of all Standard Missiles was absent from the list of vendors it is expected to partner with Lockheed Martin, as it did on many other programs, the most recent is the support for ground based mid-course interceptor missiles. The SM-3 IIB is scheduled for fielding by 2018.

    The Long Range Surface Attack Missile (LRASM) is intended to defeat surface targets well beyond the enemy's offensive or defensive weapons' range. The main adversary currently threatening U.S. naval superiority with extended range weapons is China.

    Another new missile being developed for U.S. Navy AEGIS cruisers and missile destroyers is the Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM). Part of DARPA’s Advanced Weapon Systems initiatives, LRASM has moves into the second phase of development this month, with the award of $157 million to Lockheed martin for the development of a successor for the current Boeing RGM-84 Harpoon. The new missile is required to counter the perceived threat from China, equipped with land based or naval ballistic missiles capable of targeting U.S. Carrier groups from a distance of hundreds of kilometers away. After the completion of the current demonstration phase LRASM is expected to transition to the U.S. Navy for full scale development.

    Another, more ambitious development currently at an early conceptual phase at DARPA is ArcLight, a missile system designed to engage surface ships or other targets at ranges of 3,000 miles. The missile’s terminal stage will be accelerated by a rocket booster to the edge of the atmosphere where it will reach hypervelocity speed, gliding over thousands of kilometers to reenter the atmosphere and reach its target in less than half an hour. A similar concept will be demonstrated early next year by the second test of the DARPA/U.S. Air Forces’ Falcon HTV-2.

    The Triple Target Terminator (T3) is a DARPA sponsored program demonstrating next generation air dominance weapon. Concept Photo: via DARPA

    A different mission also pursued under DARPA’s advanced weapons program is the Triple Target Terminator (T3) air dominance weapon. With this program the agency is developing a high speed, long-range missile that can engage enemy aircraft, cruise missile and air defense targets. It will be designed for internal carriage on stealth aircraft like the F-35, F-22 and F-15SE, or externally on fighters, bombers and UAVs. T3 would allow strike fighter aircraft to rapidly switch between air-to-air and air-to-surface (counter-air) capabilities. Both Raytheon and Boeing were each awarded $21.3 million contracts to develop the new missile, which is expected to enter flight testing in 2014.


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