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Navy Piloting Software to Support Rapid Unmanned Vessel Components Dev’t

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Unmanned Vessel
Unmanned Vessel

The U.S. Navy is launching a modernization pilot for its unmanned surface and underwater vehicles ahead of plans to transition the project into an official program in fiscal year 2022, USNI News reported Tuesday.

Capt. Pete Small, head of the Navy's program office for unmanned maritime systems, told the publication that the Rapid Autonomy Integration Lab (RAIL) effort is aimed at streamlining the development of common combat and control systems to support all of the Navy’s USVs and UUVs.

The program office plans to run the RAPID cloud-based software code to support information assurance and cybersecurity functions through the U.S. Air Force’s Platform One environment.

According to the report, the autonomy software will undergo testing and in-water assessments using the Razorback UUV.

“When we have the RAIL up and running, we’ll be able to provide thousands of hours of operations in simulation, plus the full-scale on-water demonstrations, to really build credibility for our plans in rapidly deploying and developing these things,” Small said.

“So I think it will really quickly advance our ability to show progress, because right now we’re subject to getting the full-scale vehicles and running and operating them, and that just takes time and money to do,”