It is rather ironic that the Navy’s fleet of mine-hunting ships are not too good at what they do – that is, to look for mines in and around the waters that they cover. Good to know that there is a remedy to that problem, coming in the form of the Knifefish drone sub which will function as the larger ship’s “glasses”, so to speak. Developed by General Dynamics, the Navy unveiled it earlier this week for the first time, where it measures 19 feet long and 21″ in diameter. The Knifefish will launch from a Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), and will be tasked with searching for buried mines in the sea floor.
The Knifefish will be fully autonomous, and it has enough energy reserves to go about its task for up to 16 hours on a full charge. All the sailors need to do when aboard an LCS is to program the Knifefish’s navigation systems with the relevant instructions on just where to swim prior to launch, and it will go about its task quietly after that.
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