Published on October 28th, 2012 | by Steven Hodson0
The Navy Lets Us Know That The Air Force Isn’t The Only One With Cool Toys – We Got Drones To
Typically when we hear talk about drones we automatically think of the US Air Force, or your local police force, and their spying flying drones that can also pack a few missiles just for yucks. Well, apparently the US Navy has been working on sea-going drones for the last three or so years and they finally managed to get one that is proving to be quite adequate to the task.
The development work for their robotic surface vessel has been done at the Navy base in Newport, Rhode Island, and has been outfitted with a dual pod Spike missile launcher and Mk-49 mounting system from Rafael Advanced Defense Systems.
It seems that the idea for these robotic gunships is that they would be able to be used to protect coastlines and harbors from attack as well as being able to operate in “congested waterways” where the bigger frigates and destroyers would have a harder time operating. In other words the idea way to fight against things like the Somali pirates or suicide boat like were used against the USS Cole.
They recently ran the test ship through its paces over three days using a long-range type of the Spike 30-pound missile and all six test firings proved to be successful. This doesn’t mean that the Navy is going to be ordering any of these but I figure they should be showing up at some point as part of the maritime fleet, and I’m betting the Coast Guard would love one or two to battle the drug runners and their cigarette speed boats.