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Navy Unmanned Aircraft Sets the Bar

Night-flying X-47B: Photo USN

The Navy's X-47B unmanned aircraft has completed its final test aboard 'USS Theodore Roosevelt' (CVN 71) and has returned to its home base at Naval Air Station Patuxent River after eight days at sea
, informs U.S. Naval Air Systems Command. While underway, the X-47B flew in the carrier pattern with manned aircraft for the first time and conducted a total of five catapult launches, four arrestments and nine touch-and-go landings, including a night time shipboard flight deck handling evaluation. "This is another detachment for the record books; all tests were safely and effectively executed," said Capt. Beau Duarte, Navy's Unmanned Carrier Aviation program manager. "We have set the bar for the future of unmanned carrier aviation."
 Testing began Aug. 17 when the X-47B performed its initial cooperative launch and recovery cycle with an F/A-18. With its automatic wing-fold capability and new tailhook retract system, the X-47B met the program's objective to demonstrate that carrier-based manned and unmanned aircraft could maintain a 90 second aircraft launch and recovery interval.

 Throughout the week, the Navy/Northrop Grumman test team captured X-47B flying quality and recovery wind condition data to evaluate how the aircraft responds to wake turbulence during approach and landing. This data will be used to improve a simulation model for use with carrier-based aircraft.


Top Brass Witness Future of Naval Aviation Unfold

Unmanned Aircraft Lands on Aircraft Carrier: Photo credit USN

The X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System (UCAS) demonstrator completes the first ever carrier-based arrested landing on board 'USS George H.W. Bush' off the coast of Virginia. "It isn't very often you get a glimpse of the future. Today, those of us aboard USS George H.W. Bush got that chance as we witnessed the X-47B make its first ever arrested landing aboard an aircraft carrier," said Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus


Radix Marine to Acquire Patrol Craft Prototype

Radix Marine, Inc, a marine vessel development company specializing in homeland defense initiatives, announced today that it has entered into an agreement to acquire, through an Equipment Lease and Purchase Agreement, the GB Challenger Class Craft, the working prototype of the company's high-speed unmanned patrol watercraft. Radix Marine will own the GB Challenger outright at the conclusion of the five-year lease with Blue Ribbon Leasing and Financial, Inc


Unmanned US Navy ASW Vessel Contract for SAIC

Science Applications International (SAIC) awarded US Navy DARPA contract for Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Unmanned Vessel. The contract by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) for the Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Continuous Trail Unmanned Vessel (ACTUV) program phases two through four to design, build and test a new prototype unmanned autonomous surface vessel.  The DARPA ACTUV program aims to develop an unmanned autonomous surface vessel with the ability to


COMPIT to Showcase Smarter Ships, Systems & Solutions

DNV GL COMPIT. Preview

  The 14th International Conference on Computer and IT Applications in the Maritime Industries (COMPIT) will take place from 11th to 13th May 2015 in Ulrichshusen, Germany. First held in the year 2000, COMPIT has established itself as a key conference in information technology (IT) for the maritime industries, bringing together software developers and users. Most participants come from industry, reflecting the practical relevance of the event


US Navy to Roll out Underwater Spy Satellites

Image: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency

 The robotic series that remade crusade in skies will shortly extend to a low sea, with underwater view “satellites,” drone-launching pods on a sea building and unmanned ships sport submarines, reports AFP.   The pods could launch surveillance drones in the air or at sea or provide a communications link when American forces are facing electronic jamming, said Jared Adams, spokesman for Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).  


Lost NZ Ferry Propeller Found 120m Down in Cook Strait

Ferry Aratere: Photo courtesy of Interislander

The propeller had been lost earlier this month from the Interislander ferry, the 'Aratere', which is expected to be out of service for 6 months as a result, but the propeller has now been found in Cook Strait by Seawork Salvage Co., contracted by KiwiRail, reports Radio New Zealand. The propeller was discovered about two nautical miles from Tory Channel, by using sonar equipment and an unmanned vehicle. Citing a Seawork spokesman


Navy's Unmanned Plane Take-Off a Seminal 2013 Navy Event

X-47B Aircraft on deck: Photo credit USN

The first-ever launch of an unmanned aircraft from a modern aircraft carrier, the USS George H.W. Bush, was described by Rear Adm. Mat Winter 
Program Executive Officer for Unmanned Aviation and Strike Weapons, as – "An inflection point in history". He adds: "These are exciting times for the Navy as we are truly doing something that has never been done before – something I never imagined could be done during my 29-year naval career.


Carrier Exercises Tandem Unmanned & Manned Flights

Combined flight exercise: Photo USN

An un-manned X-47B has completed a series of tests, operating safely and seamlessly with manned aircraft from 'USS Theodore Roosevelt' informs the US Navy. Building on lessons learned from its first test period aboard TR in November 2013, the X-47B team is now focused on perfecting deck operations and performing maneuvers with manned aircraft in the flight pattern. "Today we showed that the X-47B could take off


Elbit Systems Introduces Seagull

Seagull USV (Image: Elbit Systems)

Israel’s Elbit Systems unveiled a prototype of what it claims is the world’s first unmanned system for anti-submarine warfare (ASW) missions.   Developed in less than three years with technical and performance input from the Israeli Navy and Israel’s Ministry of Defense, the self-funded Seagull can complement or even replace expensive, manpower-intensive frigates or aircraft currently used to hunt submarines at sea, according to executives in Israel.  


Cyber World: Safer Seas via Phantom Ships

Are we that far away from phantom fully autonomous vessels plying the world’s seas?  Not according to many in the know.  Many predict by 2020 that we will see this type of ship with a limited crew in smaller applications such as the marine highway short haul scenarios


Pentagon Chief Unveils Plans to Buy More High-end Ships

U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter (Photo: U.S. Department of Defense)

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter on Wednesday mapped out plans for the U.S. Navy to buy more high-end submarines, destroyers, fighter jets and unmanned underwater vehicles using $8 billion in savings generated by scaling back orders for smaller Littoral Combat Ships.  


New Autonomous Control System Launched

Image: Sea Machines Robotics

Sea Machines Robotics of Cambridge, Mass. announced the release of its Autonomous Control System (ACS), an advanced vessel control system which converts manually piloted hulls to self-piloted Unmanned Surface Vessels (USVs). It is designed to be integrated into company-developed Sea Machine USVs


OSD Designs Research Vessel for TORI

Image: OSD

 Offshore Ship Designers (OSD-IMT) has signed a new contract to design an IMT2001 Scientific Research Vessel for the Taiwanese Ocean Research Institute (TORI).    The vessel will be used to support long-term oceanographic observation programs


Maritime Surveillance: Autonomous and in Real-time

PERSEUS

Conventional surveillance technologies cannot easily help to detect fast boats, which generally have small radar signatures and do not carry automatic identification systems (AIS). For this reason, the NATO STO CMRE (Center for Maritime Research and Experimentation) has addressed this problem


Unmanned Ships: How Close is the Autonomous Ferry?

The first remote-controlled ferry demonstrator could hit the water within four to five years thanks to a new wave of research into operational efficiency based on ship intelligence solutions. The prediction from Oskar Levander, VP for innovation


USN Names Next LCS

Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus

  Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus announced today that the next Independence-variant Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) will be named USS Tulsa (LCS 16). The selection of the name honors Oklahoma’s second largest city. Tulsa will be the second, commissioned ship to bear the name


Willard to Build 3 Survey Ships for NOAA

Image: Willard Marine

NOAA awards shipbuilding contract to Willard Marine for the construction of three aluminum survey vessels   Willard Marine informs it was awarded a contract to provide the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) with three aluminum hydrographic survey launch ships (HSLs).


Unmanned Vessels: The Future is Now

Norway’s unmanned 100 TEU coastal marine transportation system ReVolt is to be powered by a 3,000kWh battery to provide a range of 100 nautical miles. With no crew onboard DNV GL has estimated a total saving of up to $34 million over its estimated 30 years time in service.

There is a global boom in the development of unmanned systems, from below the ocean’s surface to high in the sky to the world’s roads. Add to this list the maritime industry, on both military and civilian vessels. Maritime Reporter & Engineering News examines in depth recent


Seajacks Scylla Delivered

Seajacks Scylla (Photo: Seajacks)

Seajacks Scylla, touted as the world's largest and most advanced wind farm installation and offshore construction vessel, has been delivered by the Samsung Heavy Industries Shipyard in Geoje, Republic of Korea.   Based on the Gusto MSC NG14000X design, the ABS-classed Seajacks Scylla


Rocket Debris Found Near Isles of Scilly

Photo: Maritime and Coastguard Agency

A piece of metal thought to be debris from an American space rocket was recovered from the sea off the Isles of Scilly.   The metal – a large section of alloy about 10 meters by 4 meters, was spotted on the surface between Bryher and Tresco and reported to the UK Coastguard November 26


New Roles for Satcoms in Autonomous Shipping

Commercial Ship No.2.jpg

Examining some questions regarding commercial autonomous and drone ships, as well as why VSAT currently presents the best solution for the communications and control of such vessels. The topic of autonomous shipping has been much in the news recently


Drone Technology Aids Antarctic Ship Operations

Australian UAV Director James Rennie prepares the drone on the aft deck of the Aurora Australis (Courtesy Australian UAV)

   A quadcopter drone has helped navigate the Aurora Australis through the sea ice on its annual resupply voyage to Casey station. Flown off the aft deck of the ship, the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) provided the crew with real-time imagery of the sea ice conditions ahead of the ship


Curtiss-Wright, Geospectrum Technologies Collaborate

Photo courtesy of Curtiss-Wright

Press Release -- Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions division has announced that its INDAL business unit is collaborating with GeoSpectrum Technologies  to develop a new compact and lightweight sonar system designed for the smaller surface ships and Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) markets


USCG Search for Dinghy Owner near Kaneohe Bay, OAHU

U.S. Coast Guard photos

The Coast Guard is seeking the public's help identifying the owner of a 13-foot white sailing dinghy found near Kaneohe Bay, Wednesday. Anyone with information that may help identify the owner of the sailing dinghy is asked to contact the Coast Guard Sector Honolulu Command Center at






 
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