UNMANNED SURFACE VEHICLES
ANTI-SUBMARINE CONTINUOUS TRAIL
UNMANNED VEHICLE (ACTUV)
BRIEFING: The Sea Hunter ACTUV is a large USV designed to
trail submarines continuously for long durations with active
sonar, sparing the need for continuous surveillance by manned
platforms. The maritime autonomy system has been tested on
a surrogate platform. The vessel, built by Vigor, with Leidos
as prime contractor and providing the autonomy system, was
launched in 2016 and is being tested from San Diego. The program is expected to be transferred from the Defense Advanced
Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to the Navy in 2017.
CONTRACTORS: . . . . . . . . . Leidos, Vigor Industrial
UNMANNED AERIAL SYSTEMS
BRIEFING: The MQ-4C Triton Broad-Area Maritime Surveillance
(BAMS) unmanned aerial system (UAS) will be a forward-deployed, land-based, remotely operated system that provides a
persistent maritime ISR capability using a multisensor mission
payload (maritime radar, electro-optical/infrared, electronic
support measures, automatic identification system and basic
communications relay) at planned operational ranges up to
2,000 nautical miles. The MQ-4C will provide combat information to operational and tactical users such as the Expeditionary
Strike Group, Carrier Strike Group and the Joint Forces Maritime
Component Commander. MQ-4C-collected data posted to the
Global Information Grid will support a variety of operations and
associated intelligence activities.
In April 2008, Northrop Grumman Corp. was awarded the
System Development and Demonstration contract, leveraging
the U.S. Air Force RQ-4B Global Hawk Block 20 design to
provide the initial air vehicle baseline. The Navy has made
improvements for reliability, maintainability, all-weather
capability and maritime performance. Developmental Test &
Evaluation began in late 2011 and two initial developmental
aircraft have been built.
The MQ-4C’s first flight occurred on May 22, 2013. The
first two MQ-4Cs were delivered to the VX- 20 at Naval Air
Station (NAS) Patuxent River, Md., in September 2014 and
October 2014, respectively, to begin Navy test and evaluation. A third, Northrop Grumman-owned MQ-4C arrived at
Patuxent River in December 2014.
The two System Demonstration Test Articles — the fourth
and fifth Tritons to be built — will join the fleet after they go
through initial operational test and evaluation. Operational
Assessment was completed in February 2016. LRIP advanced
procurement was approved February 2015 and the full contract for LRIP- 1 was awarded on Sept. 27, 2016, for three
MQ-4Cs, one main operating base (MOB) and one forward
operating base (FOB).
Early operational capability (EOC) is scheduled for fiscal
2018. Triton will reach IOC, when four multiple-intelligence
operational MQ-4Cs are available for one orbit, achieving the
ability to maintain a continuous orbit from a deployment site.
At full operational capability, the MQ-4C will support up to five
maritime orbits worldwide each with four aircraft as a key operational platform in maintaining maritime domain awareness.
The Navy plans to procure 68 MQ-4Cs in addition to the
two prototypes. The first of two operational Triton squadrons,
VUP- 19, has formed at NAS Jacksonville, Fla., and is expected
to build up to 500 personnel and 12 MQ-4Cs. VUP- 11 will be
established at NAS Whidbey Island, Wash., in 2019 as the
second operational squadron. The two operational squadrons
together would field five orbits, for a total requirement of 20
Tritons. The remaining 38 aircraft would sustain the program
for attrition, training and depot-level maintenance.
WINGSPAN: . . . . . . . . . . . . . 130. 9 feet
LENGTH: ................ 47.6feet
WEIGHT: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . gross takeoff weight 32,250 pounds
AIRSPEED:. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 330 knots true air speed (TAS)
ENDURANCE:. . . . . . . . . . . . more than 24 hours
CEILING:................. 60,000 feet
POWER PLANT: . . . . . . . . . . 1 Rolls-Royce AE3007H turbofan engine
CON TRAC TOR: . . . . . . . . . . Northrop Grumman Corp.
RQ-4A BROAD AREA MARITIME
SURVEILLANCE DEMONSTRATOR (BAMS-D)
BRIEFING: The BAMS-D, formerly known as the Global Hawk
Maritime Demonstration, is being used to develop Navy
SEA HUNTER ANTI-SUBMARINE CONTINUOUS TRAIL