DARPA announced on March 12 that it has awarded a contract worth nearly $285,000 to Raytheon Company to develop a preliminary design for a base station for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) which could be launched from an aircraft and provide “long range persistent surveillance in forward deployed maritime areas.”
Raytheon was awarded this contract be DARPA’s Strategic Technology Office.
“The tasks include evaluating and analysis of critical technologies required for air deployment, operation in variable seas, define mission profile, developed base station concepts, including the energy production subsystem, communications, and ISR [Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance] payloads,” explains DARPA’s award notice.
“The overall concept is interesting,” the notice continues, “the problem of how to provide long range persistent surveillance in forward deployed maritime areas is a challenge for both DARPA and the Navy,” the notice continues. “If successful, air delivery will force the system (payload) to survive water entry.”