More
    HomeMilitaryUS Military's Unmanned 'Manta Ray' Submarine Sails Through Initial Sea Test

    US Military’s Unmanned ‘Manta Ray’ Submarine Sails Through Initial Sea Test

    Published on

    spot_img

    The US military is charting new depths with its latest maritime innovation, the “Manta Ray,” an unmanned underwater drone capable of autonomous operation.

    Developed as part of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (DARPA) efforts to enhance the United States’ underwater capabilities, the Manta Ray has successfully passed its first major in-water test, signaling a significant advance in unmanned naval technology.

    During February and March, off the coast of Southern California, the Manta Ray underwent full-scale testing, showcasing its various modes of propulsion and steering while submerged. According to DARPA, this represents a milestone in developing “a new class of long-duration, long-range, payload-capable UUVs” to operate across the world’s oceans.

    Built by defense contractor Northrop Grumman, the Manta Ray, named for its resemblance to the large marine creature, can function akin to torpedoes, submarines, or even mines.

    The test evaluations included the vehicle’s buoyancy, propellers, and control surfaces. DARPA’s program manager for the Manta Ray, Dr. Kyle Woerner, stated, “Our successful, full-scale Manta Ray testing validates the vehicle’s readiness to advance toward real-world operations after being rapidly assembled in the field from modular subsections.”

    This modular design of the underwater drone also underscores its transportation efficiency. Assembled from various subsections, the vehicle can be easily shipped and set up, minimizing the occupation of valuable pier space at US naval facilities.

    Additionally, it can be directly delivered to the operational area, conserving energy that would otherwise be expended in transit.

    “Once deployed, the vehicle uses efficient, buoyancy-driven gliding to move through the water,” Woerner said. The Manta Ray is designed with multiple payload bays, allowing it to undertake a wide range of naval missions.

    The significance of such unmanned vehicles is ever-growing. The US Navy operates several types of UUVs, USVs (unmanned surface vehicles), and UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) for missions like reconnaissance and intelligence gathering. In an increasingly automated future of warfare, these platforms offer enhanced surveillance and deterrence options.

    In the Middle East, the Navy’s Task Force 59 integrates unmanned systems with artificial intelligence to bolster maritime operations.

    These initiatives provide the US with more diverse options in monitoring and responding to threats, as evidenced by the increasing use of unmanned systems by both allies and adversaries.

    Iran-backed Houthi rebels have attempted attacks using UUVs and USVs in the Red Sea, and Ukraine has employed USVs to target Russian warships in the Black Sea, demonstrating the strategic value of such technology in modern conflicts.

    Looking ahead, DARPA is collaborating with the US Navy on the Manta Ray’s next testing phases, with the aim of transitioning to operational readiness.

    The advent of the Manta Ray not only reflects the growing demand for advanced unmanned systems in naval operations but also marks a pivotal moment in the evolution of maritime military strategy.

    As nations navigate the complex waters of 21st-century warfare, vehicles like the Manta Ray will undoubtedly play a critical role in shaping the future of naval conflict and deterrence.

    Latest articles

    FN Five-seveN MRD: A New Era in Precision Handguns

    The FN Five-seveN has stood out in the modern firearms landscape for years, known...

    Raytheon’s Breakthrough: Achieving Milestones in the HALO Program

    The United States Navy is enhancing its offensive prowess and strategic vision by developing...

    Significance of Reagan Test Site in US Hypersonic Weapon Testing

    The US Air Force has garnered attention with the successful trial of a prototype...

    The B-21 Raider of the U.S. Air Force Prepares for Deployment Despite Production Hurdles and Hypersonic Competition

    The B-21 Raider, the United States Air Force's new stealth bomber, is edging closer...

    More like this

    FN Five-seveN MRD: A New Era in Precision Handguns

    The FN Five-seveN has stood out in the modern firearms landscape for years, known...

    Raytheon’s Breakthrough: Achieving Milestones in the HALO Program

    The United States Navy is enhancing its offensive prowess and strategic vision by developing...

    Significance of Reagan Test Site in US Hypersonic Weapon Testing

    The US Air Force has garnered attention with the successful trial of a prototype...