Sub Wanted

Navy’s Giant New Robot Sub Will Prowl Ocean For Months Autonomously

byJon Christian
2. 17. 19

The Navy's working on a deadly new ocean hunter.

Absolute Unit

The Navy just awarded Boeing a contract to build a giant robot submarine, called the Orca Extra-Large Unmanned Undersea Vehicle, which it says will prowl the depths of the ocean autonomously for months at a time.

The U.S. Naval Institute says the sub will be used for “mine countermeasures, anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, electronic warfare and strike missions.”

Extra Large Sub

The chunky Orca design will be 51 feet long and with a diameter of about 8.5 feet, and weigh about 50 tons, according to Popular Mechanics. New Atlas reports that it’ll be diesel-electric.

It’ll also be modular, with a “payload system” that can house 2,000 cubic feet of custom equipment.


Body by Boeing

The Orca will also potentially house some serious weapons, PopMech reports, with the ability to pack light and heavyweight torpedoes and lay mines — or it could stick to autonomous reconnaissance.

“This sort of versatility in a single, low-cost package is fairly unheard of in military spending,” PopMech wrote.

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