Navy dreams of ocean-traversing undersea robots

It may not be in the cards yet, but the Navy hasn't given up hope that one day it will have underwater UAS that can journey across the ocean. And in fact, some universities are already working on the technology.

The Navy says it is still hopeful that it might one day deploy undersea unmanned systems that would have sufficient propulsion and fuel systems capabilities for a journey across an entire ocean, Adm. Jonathan Greenert, chief of naval operations, said March 16, reports Spencer Ackerman at Wired's Danger Room blog.

“I’m very much desirous of that end-state, cross-ocean, as feasible,” Greenert told reporters. “There are a few propulsion systems that can give you that range — 30-day, 45-day. The fuel needed, regrettably, is extensive, and that drives the size, so we’re not there yet.”

The service's current fleet of systems of this nature resemble torpedoes and have short ranges and limited sensing capabilities, the story said. 

In addition to the Office of Naval Research, a number of universities are hard at work on undersea unmanned technology, including Rutgers, Johns Hopkins and Penn State, the story said.

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