The U.S. Navy is looking to replace its legacy small and medium unmanned underwater vehicles for mine countermeasure missions as early as 2023, Defense News reported Thursday.
Capt. Dan Malatesta, a program manager in the Navy's Program Executive Office for Unmanned and Small Combatants, said at a Navy League conference that an Expeditionary Mine Countermeasure Company finished a user operational evaluation activity in the small UUV program, dubbed Lionfish.
The branch is eyeing the Iver4 platforn from L3Harris Technologies and the Remus 300 system from Hydroid, a marine robot developer that Huntington Ingalls Industries acquired in March 2020, as potential replacements for the 150-pound Mk 18 Mod 1 Swordfish.
For the medium UUV program, the Navy started its process of identifying potential sources to replace the 600-pound Mk 18 Mod 2 Kingfish.
Malatesta said the branch will merge its Remus 600-based Kingfish and Razorback platforms into one replacement effort, called Viperfish, according to the report.