USSOCOM to use new Lockheed Martin undersea vehicle for long-distance missions
Lockheed Martin, in partnership with Submergence Group LLC, announced on July 21 that it will manufacture Dry Combat Submersibles (DCS) that will transport personnel to their mission sites while submerged. These vehicles have longer endurance and operate at greater depths than swimmer delivery vehicles (SDV) in use.
Under the terms of the $166 million U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) contract, Lockheed Martin will build as many as three DCS vehicles over the next five years. The vehicles will weigh more than 30 tons, be launched from surface ships, and be able to travel long distances underwater.
Currently, personnel transiting underwater use the SDV to reach their final destination – the personnel are in dive gear and exposed to the undersea environment. DCS allows the personnel to get closer to their destination before they enter the water, and be more effective upon arrival.
“Our advancements in undersea technologies will ensure personnel are equipped with technologically capable and adaptable systems that can easily be refreshed with the latest capabilities,” said Erika Marshall, general manager and program director at Lockheed Martin’s site in Palm Beach. “These reliable undersea vehicles will protect personnel, ensure they arrive ready to execute their mission, and return them safely.”
With over 50 years of manned submersible experience, Lockheed Martin continues to advance undersea submersible technology to improve inspection and combat capability, while assuring operational safety.
Lockheed Martin is partnered with Submergence Group, LLC to build, integrate, test, and deliver up to three submersibles to USSOCOM. Work will be performed in Plymouth, United Kingdom, and Palm Beach County, Florida.