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Undersea Communications Between Submarines and Unmanned Undersea Vehicles in a Command and Control Denied Environment

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Master's thesis

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Nuclear powered submarines are most vulnerable to detection and attack while at periscope depth. Submarines also have specific communication and time requirements they have to meet and the primary method of transmitting and receiving data is via satellite, which requires the submarine to be at periscope depth. This means that in a command and control denied environment C2DE, a submarine may be incapable of receiving orders or transmitting required reports. In order to meet its communications requirements, the submarine has to navigate outside of the denied environment, conduct all necessary satellite communications, and proceed back to the C2DE zone. Through great improvements in unmanned underwater vehicle UUV technology and the development of new line-of-sight rapid data transmission methods, submarines may be able to operate in C2DEs and conduct all necessary communications without ever going to periscope depth. This study analyzes different configurations for UUV and submarine interaction in a C2DE area using a series of models in the Map Aware Non-Uniform Automata MANA modeling environment. This analysis explores the value of several different UUV characteristics as well as undersea garage configurations in minimizing the time it takes for a submarine to conduct its communications, the latency of the data received, and the cost of construction for the system. The system as modeled shows that the combination of the UUV and blue-green laser can provide the submarine with service times comparable to the time it takes for a submarine to reach periscope depth and expected data latency of less than an hour.

Subject Categories:

  • Submarine Engineering
  • Non-Radio Communications

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