Unmanned Vehicles (UV) in Mine Countermeasures (U)
Final rept. Feb 1999-Nov 2000
NAVAL RESEARCH ADVISORY COMMITTEE ARLINGTON VA
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The study addresses the application and identification of alternatives for Unmanned Vehicles UVs in Mine Countermeasures MCM operations. The panel reviewed current programs under development to determine gaps and overlaps and made recommendations for future UV requirements. In future joint littoral warfare naval mines will be among the asymmetric threats of most concern. This problem is unique to the Naval Services. At the outset it must be noted that there is no silver bullet in MCM. The different types of mines and environmental conditions argue for a robust, flexible system of systems. Technology will not support single platforms or sensors with the required capability to perform the MCM mission. Additionally, the Commanders operational requirement will be situation dependent while in other cases neutralization may be necessary. Therefore, an approach with vehicles and sensors tailored to different functions, and netted together, appears to be the most practical, feasible, and cost effective. A family of UVs and sensor systems would provide end-to-end capability over the broad littoral environment vehicles which are clandestine, affordable, and virtually expendable. Additionally, the DoN should stay the course with respect to the programs under development today, in order to field them, learn from them in an operational environment, and fully exploit the technology. There are surf zone ST programs under way which should be pushed to demonstration. The foregoing will require sustained investment in UV and sensor technology, while concurrently maintaining resources in the developmental systems.
- Underwater Ordnance