Boeing tests submarine drone off Santa Catalina Island

The 18-foot mini-sub made at the company’s defense systems facility in Anaheim could be used for national defense and environmental protection.


By W.J. Hennigan, Los Angeles Times
An 18-foot, bright-yellow submarine drone is being tested off the coast of Santa Catalina Island for possible use by the U.S. militaryto stalk enemy waters, patrol local harbors for national security threats and scour ocean floors to detect environmental hazards.Although robotic aircraft already play a critical role in modern warfare, taking out insurgents with missile strikes in the skies above Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya, the same robotic revolution hasn’t taken place in the world’s oceans.Submarine drones have had limited use in ocean exploration, but Boeing Co.hopes to forge a much more sweeping role in national defense and environmental protection, said Mark Kosko, program director for the company’s Unmanned Underwater Systems division.”We’re at the point that we can take this show on the road,” he said. “This is a technology that can now move beyond the test role into a more meaningful role.”

The mini-sub was made at Boeing’s defense systems facility in Anaheim.

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