Navy to Brief Industry in October on Project to Build Large Long-Endurance Unmanned Submarine

John Keller

September 19, 2013

WASHINGTON – U.S. Navy unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) experts will brief industry next month on a project to develop a large unmanned submarine able to operate in the open ocean and in coastal waters and harbors on missions lasting more than 70 days to gather intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) information.

Officials of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC) Division Newport, in support of the Naval Sea Systems Command, will conduct industry briefings on the Large Displacement Unmanned Undersea Vehicle (LDUUV) program from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on 16 Oct. 2013 at Alion Science and Technology Inc. in Washington.

The LDUUV is to be a pier-launched and recovered large unmanned submersible able to operate in the open ocean and conduct over-the-horizon sensor missions in coastal waters and harbors. Briefings will be at Alion Science and Technology Inc., Suite 200, 1100 New Jersey Ave. SE, Washington DC 20003.

Since 2011 scientists at the Office of Naval Research (ONR) in Arlington, Va., have been pursuing two primary technology areas -- machine autonomy and endurance -- as part of the LDUUV Innovative Naval Prototype Technology (LDUUV INP) to develop UUV autonomy and long-endurance propulsion systems for large UUVs.

Briefings will involve the LDUUV vision and missions; program schedule, budget, and information sharing; technology risks and payoffs; technology development and transfer; employment, operations, and support; testing requirements; and questions and answers. Briefings will be at the secret level.

Pre-registration for the LDUUV Industry Information Day is mandatory. To preregister send an email to the Navy's Ron Merlene at, with LDUUV Industry Information Day Attendance in the subject line.

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In the email include company name and address, CAGE code, primary point of contact, email address and telephone number, names and contact information for as many as six company attendees, and questions to be asked during the briefings.

Navy leaders expect the LDUUV to be transported to and deployed from worldwide port facilities, or carried by and deployed from Navy vessels like the littoral combat ship (LCS), Ohio-class guided missile submarine (SSGN), and the Virginia-class fast attack submarine (SSN).

ONR researchers already have awarded contracts to several companies to develop autonomy and long-endurance propulsion technologies for the LDUUV.

Fuelcell Energy Inc. in Danbury, Conn.; Sierra Lobo Inc. in Fremont, Ohio; the Hamilton Sundstrand Corp. Sea Systems segment, in Windsor Locks, Conn.; General Atomics in San Diego; Lynntech Inc. in College Station, Texas; and NexTech Materials Ltd. in Lewis Center, Ohio, are investigating advanced UUV power and propulsion technologies.

Hydroid Inc. in Pocasset, Mass., and Metron Inc. in Reston, Va., meanwhile, are developing autonomy technology applicable to a future LDUUV.

For questions or concerns about the October LDUUV industry briefings contact the Navy's Tam Nguyen by phone at 202-781-1581, or by email at, or Ron Merlene by phone at 202-781-1227, or by email at