The Navy is planning to launch a massive, 50-ton undersea drone to expand mission scope, increase attack options, integrate large high-tech sensors, further safeguard manned combat crews and possibly fire torpedoes — all while waging war under the ocean surface.
The 50-ton Orca, which would not fit in a submarine launch tube, brings an unprecedented sensing, endurance and attack advantage. The Navy has finished its Critical Design Review of the Orca, called an Extra Large Unmanned Undersea Vehicle, and begun construction, Capt. Pete Small, Program Manager for Unmanned Systems, Naval Sea Systems Command, said in early May at the Navy League’s Sea Air Space Symposium.
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