The Herald of Everett, Washington
HeraldNet on Facebook HeraldNet on Twitter HeraldNet RSS feeds HeraldNet Pinterest HeraldNet Google Plus HeraldNet Youtube
HeraldNet Newsletters  Newsletters: Sign up | Manage  Green editions icon Green editions

Calendar


HeraldNet Headlines
HeraldNet Newsletter Delivered to your inbox each week.
Published: Friday, December 6, 2013, 4:54 p.m.

Navy launches drone from submerged sub

LOS ANGELES --?? The Navy has launched a drone from a submerged submarine, a feat that could prove valuable in providing intelligence and reconnaissance capabilities for military special operations for decades to come.
The small drone was fired from the Providence submarine'??s torpedo tube, where it unfolded its wings, took off and flew a "??several hour"?¯ mission demonstrating live video capabilities streamed back to the sub, the Navy said.
The project, which took $15 million and about six years to accomplish, was carried out by the Naval Research Laboratory. It took place at the Navy'??s Atlantic Undersea Test and Evaluation Center in the Bahamas.
"This six-year effort represents the best in collaboration of a Navy laboratory and industry to produce a technology that meets the needs of the special operations community," said Warren Schultz, program developer and manager with the Naval Research Laboratory. "The creativity and resourcefulness brought to this project by a unique team of scientists and engineers represents an unprecedented paradigm shift."
The drone, known as the experimental fuel cell unmanned aerial system, or XFC, is an all-electric, autonomous aircraft that can fly more than six hours at a time.
It's put into a container for launch and is blasted through a torpedo tube typically used for launching Tomahawk cruise missiles.
To take off, the drone uses an electrically assisted system, which lifts the plane vertically out of the container, allowing its folding wings to spring out.
The research program was a proof of concept and not a program of record, the Navy said. There is no next phase.
The flight marks another big milestone for the Navy, which in July launched and landed a drone on an aircraft carrier for the first time.

Share your comments: Log in using your HeraldNet account or your Facebook, Twitter or Disqus profile. Comments that violate the rules are subject to removal. Please see our terms of use. Please note that you must verify your email address for your comments to appear.

You are logged in using your HeraldNet ID. Click here to update your profile. | Log out.

Our new comment system is not supported in IE 7. Please upgrade your browser here.

comments powered by Disqus
digital subscription promo

Subscribe now

Unlimited digital access starting at 99 cents, or included with any print subscription.

loading...