Maritime UAV and UUV Capabilities Showcased During US Navy Exercise

By Mike Ball / 19 Sep 2018

Northrop Grumman autonomous helicopter

Northrop Grumman Corporation has announced that, in collaboration with industry partners, it participated in the U.S. Navy’s Advanced Naval Technology Exercise (ANTX) in Newport, Rhode Island. The company demonstrated advanced capabilities in the command and control of future unmanned maritime missions and the ability to more effectively deliver critical information to the warfighter in contested environments. The exercise demonstrated air drop of sonobuoys from a Northrop Grumman Fire Scout surrogate unmanned helicopter and deployed the Northrop Grumman micro synthetic aperture sonar with real-time automated target recognition on a man-portable UUV (unmanned underwater vehicle).

“Northrop Grumman’s expertise in networked sensors and advanced mission management for autonomous aircraft systems provides significant offensive and defensive capabilities for our customers in the maritime environment,” said Dan Redman, ANTX program manager, Northrop Grumman. “By showcasing how sensors can be airdropped from a Fire Scout surrogate, we are demonstrating future mission applications for this platform.”

Northrop Grumman’s seabed warfare capabilities were also highlighted at this year’s exercise. A central part of this demonstration was Northrop Grumman’s µSAS and real-time automated target recognition technologies. The µSAS is a low size, weight and power, high-performance payload that can operate off a man-portable autonomous underwater vehicle for real-time classification of mine-like objects.

“This technology is an example of leveraging digital transformation to rapidly provide software defined, hardware enabled capabilities to the fleet,” said Alan Lytle, vice president, undersea systems, Northrop Grumman. “Integration of unmanned and autonomous capabilities into the battle space reduces staffing required to conduct operations and risk to personnel, while supporting our nation’s continued undersea superiority.”

The three-day annual exercise was developed to demonstrate future Navy technologies in a collaborative, low-risk environment. Government, academia and industry participants gathered to showcase new capabilities to push the boundaries of what is possible in a complex environment. Northrop Grumman was partnered in the exercise with Physical Optics Corp, Ultra Electronics USSI, Hydroid, Optimum Solutions and Silvus.

Posted by Mike Ball Mike Ball is our resident technical editor here at Unmanned Systems Technology. Combining his passion for teaching, advanced engineering and all things unmanned, Mike keeps a watchful eye over everything related to the unmanned technical sector. With over 10 years’ experience in the unmanned field and a degree in engineering, Mike’s been heading up our technical team here for the last 8 years. Connect & Contact