While the US Navy buys drones, DARPA is considering how they will cover long distances
Unmanned warships, physically connected to each other, will be able to cover long distances and cross oceans. Yes, the new DARPA concept explores the idea of an unmanned “Sea Train”, when ships move like wagons in a train, overcoming the impedance.
Sea Train Concept
Currently, the US Navy plans to purchase a number of drones: from medium (from 39 to 154 feet) and large (from 200 to 300 feet). But the fact is that relatively small drones have one major drawback. They are not able to cover long distances, so they will not be able to fly to hotspots such as the South China Sea or the Baltic Sea. All because the size of the ship limits the amount of fuel, and the impedance only complicates the task.
Thanks to the concept of the “Sea Train”, drones will be able to cross the oceans
The concept of the “Sea Train” envisages that a number of unmanned ships will be combined into one large “virtual ship” that will be able to travel thousands of miles without refueling. Upon arrival in the area of operation, the ships are separated from each other and perform the necessary tasks.
Currently, DARPA plans to develop and test the concept, which will take place in two stages of 18 months each. If successful, the US Navy will have new opportunities to use drones at sea.