Accession Number:

ADA413224

Title:

As Assessment of Undersea Weapons Science and Technology

Descriptive Note:

Corporate Author:

NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL WASHINGTON DC NAVAL STUDIES BOARD

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2000-01-01

Pagination or Media Count:

69.0

Abstract:

The challenge of undersea warfare is not widely appreciated. In the atmosphere, objects are generally visible, locatable, and identifiable. Electromagnetic radiation is reflected, refracted, and absorbed to a manageable extent. The boundaries do not cause major problems. The movement of platforms and projectiles is not greatly impeded by the medium. Electromagnetic emissions from sources occur at the speed of light, resulting in high data rates, which facilitate detection, classification, localization, and engagement. By comparison, the underwater challenge in these respects is limited by the speed of sound in seawater. Radiation is strongly absorbed and redirected at boundaries. Deep water provides cover. Acoustic methodology has long been of paramount importance in deep water, and although the environment is relatively well understood, it is complicated. Near-shore waters the littorals are essential battle spaces for extending a force, but the challenges are enormous and not well characterized in terms of science or terrain. Uncertainty is common. Acoustic signals respond to all manner of often unknown boundaries associated with shallow water, traffic, debris, gradients, and the like. The encounter distances may be short. Water absorbs radiation directly and is often murky besides. The physics of the undersea environment is probably understood in general terms, but coupling this understanding to practical use is difficult. New physics and new applications will emerge to the benefit of nations that pursue the basic science. A broadening of sensor technology is inevitable. Chemistry will be exploited. It is in this domain of open-ended science and technology ST that the Office of Naval Research ONR can make a unique contribution by identifying, initiating, and enabling future opportunities, missions, capabilities, and solutions.

Subject Categories:

  • Undersea and Antisubmarine Warfare

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE