Megan Eckstein is the naval warfare reporter at Defense News. She has covered military news since 2009, with a focus on U.S. Navy and Marine Corps operations, acquisition programs, and budgets. She has reported from four geographic fleets and is happiest when she’s filing stories from a ship. Megan is a University of Maryland alumna.
The new 3rd Marine Littoral Regiment got to show off the basics of how it will operate with partners at RIMPAC. Now comes a major experimentation push ahead of a fall 2023 deadline to become operational.
Four unmanned surface vessels are operating at RIMPAC -- and the lessons they generate will inform the path to a Large USV program of record in the next three years, and help determine if there's a future for a Medium USV.
A pair of Lockheed Martin tools recommended offensive and defensive firing solutions to joint force commanders at Valiant Shield 2022, and a second system digitally sent the targeting data to shooters on the ground.
The Navy wants to put more missile tubes out to sea by installing them on USVs. Congress isn't comfortable enough yet with the state of unmanned technology. There could be an alternate plan to make both sides happy.
The technologies the U.S. needs to bolster its homeland defense against Russian submarines and missiles are currently available — meaning the Defense Department could move out quickly on buying and fielding them if they support these programs in the upcoming 2023 budget.
Though the Navy has said it will field an early Project Overmatch network capability with a carrier strike group in 2023, little information has been revealed about whether the service is on track to meet that goal.
The U.S. Navy's chief of naval operations hopes to conduct significant experimentation in the next five years to support deploying an early medium or large USV as part of a strike group in the 2027 time frame.