The vessels, dubbed Anti-Submarine Warfare Continuous Trail Unmanned Vessels or ACTUVs, are designed to be unmanned, with only intermittent communication from operators on shore or on a ship, and to require no maintenance for months. They will also obey navigational rules and be able to avoid collisions at sea. The three main objectives of the program are to build an “X-ship” that operates without anyone stepping aboard at any point in its operating cycle, secondly to demonstrate the technical viability of the system under “sparse remote supervisory control”, and thirdly to demonstrate the anti-submarine capability of the vessel and its “novel suite of sensors”. The ACTUV is unlike other unmanned vessels in that it is designed for global, independent deployment for months at a time.
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