Sunday, July 13, 2014



American Admiralty Books Safety & Privacy Policies   EU VISITORS WARNING POSSIBLE COOKIES AHEAD

Image credit: United States Government  Robot Fish “Charlie” is an unmanned underwater vehicle. A precursor to today's USN "Robo Tuna", Charlie was a catfish configuration who actually looked a lot like our own Namazu

The Naval Warfare Development Command in Norfolk, VA likes to call the thing "Robo-Tuna". "Bio-memetic" appears to be "navspeak" for life like, and UUV is "navspeak" for unmanned underwater vehicle. "Robo-tuna" looks like, and swims like a fish about the size of a large tuna (about 4 ft in length). We suppose that is the absolute latest in underwater stealth. I suppose we could just refer to "Robo Tuna" as a "drone", a kind of generic civilian term for unmanned weapon and surveillance systems regardless of whether they fly, "swim", crawl, are track vehicles, or wheeled. This drone looks like a fish and swims like a fish, and the U.S.Navy hopes the enemy will presume it is a fish. "Robo Tuna is a product of the Navy Warfare Rapid Innovation Cell (CRIC in "Navspeak").  Robo Tuna as a surveillance tool is expected to have a loiter time of days on a single battery. ( Trust us it will be more expensive than the biggest ones you put in your emergency lighting). "Robo Tuna can swim at up to 40 kts. which combined with size and fishy looks makes it a difficult target for most ASW defense tactics. However we think it could be vulnerable to in harbor anti swimmer zapper tactics like the simple irregular underwater detonations of grenades, and the deployment of swimmer entanglement devices. This vulnerability of the Robo Tuna we find is a cautionary element. The Navy definitely intends to deploy the "fish" on port surveillance missions. If a port is under heavy security swimmer entanglement gear and periodic irregular under water explosive detonation it could take out the "fish" if it gets too close to the target. Of course local biological fish also suffer from such harbor defensive tactics which may limit their application in some cases. Under sea mine detection, and extended surveillance of ships and submarines are other missions. Once a production line is formed there may be coast guard markets for it, imagine a Green Peace / Sea Shepard monitor that they can't crash into!    

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