U.S. Navy Launches Aerial Drone from a Submarine

Oh, great

  • Share
  • Read Later
Naval Sea System Command

Just in case military drone strikes weren’t scary enough, now the Navy has demonstrated that it can launch aerial drones from a submerged submarine.

Powered by an electric fuel cell, the eXperimental Fuel Cell Unmanned Aerial System (XFC UAS) was launched from the torpedo tube of the USS Providence earlier this year. While the exact date and location of the launch were not disclosed, according to a press release the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory released Thursday, the drone flew for several hours before landing at the Naval Sea Systems Command Atlantic Undersea Test and Evaluation Center in the Bahamas. The launcher fits inside the same canisters already used for launching Tomahawk cruise missiles on submarines.

Developed with funding from the Office of Naval Research and Department of Defense Rapid Reaction Technology Office, the project took less than six years to complete, according to the Naval Research Laboratory. The new development is expected to help the Navy collect crucial intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.

[Naval Research Laboratory]