31 March 2017
The U.S. Navy has stood up a team within the past year to promote the integration of unmanned systems with submarines, a service official said March 21.
The team brings together various program offices to promote a common set of interfaces for deploying unmanned systems from submarines, said Michael McClatchy, director of advanced undersea integration at Naval Sea Systems Command. Rear Adm. Michael Jabaley, program executive officer for submarines, called for the group's formation, and the team was officially created in July.
Submarines have various ways of launching unmanned systems, including dry deck shelters, torpedo tubes and smaller delivery mechanisms, and the Navy wants to ensure industry and academia know how to build unmanned systems that are compatible with those launchers, McClatchy said at a Marine Technology Society breakfast in Arlington, Va.
"By building to those interfaces, it makes it easier for us to get" an unmanned system into a submarine, McClatchy said.
At the same breakfast, Chief of Naval Research Rear Adm. David Hahn revealed that Rear Adm. Tim Gallaudet, the Navy's oceanographer and commander of Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command (NMOC), plans to launch a government-industry task force to improve the nation's understanding of ocean science. Hahn and Gallaudet intend to lead a meeting later this week to further define the task force's membership, Hahn said.
"It is clear that we as a nation need to be at the forefront of [ocean science], and not just for naval applications but for lots of reasons," he said. "Generationally, we need to be interested again for the right reasons in all of the ocean."
According to NMOC's website, the command "provides environmental information to help naval and joint forces operate more safely and effectively, and make better decisions faster than the adversary."