Navy partners with university to advance uncrewed platform tech

By Abby Shepherd / June 20, 2024 at 11:37 AM

The Navy is collaborating with academia to advance its capabilities in uncrewed technology and warfare, with planning expected over the next four years for future demonstrations.

Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command (CNMOC) announced a partnership with the University of Southern Mississippi, detailing future research and demonstration plans in a press release from the university earlier this month.

The partners plan to use recent developments in artificial intelligence, uncrewed systems platforms and sensors to “address crucial challenges in Naval Meteorology and Oceanography,” according to the press release.

Scientists and engineers from the Roger F. Wicker Center for Ocean Enterprise and the Naval Oceanographic Office will spearhead the effort. CNMOC Chief Technology Officer Betty Jester called the partnership with the university a “very real step” in the Navy’s mission of ensuring maritime superiority.

"This [Cooperative Research and Development Agreement] exemplifies our commitment to fostering innovation and securing a technological edge for the Navy,” Jester said in a statement.

The partnership follows a February announcement from the Navy and Defense Innovation Unit, which tasked Oceaneering International, Kongsberg Discovery and Anduril Industries with prototyping and developing Unmanned Underwater Vehicle platforms.

“Undersea capabilities are critical to success in a potential conflict in the Indo-Pacific or elsewhere and providing autonomous underwater sensing and payload delivery in dispersed, long-range, deep and contested environments is key,” a DIU statement said at the time.