The Traditional Submarine is Becoming Obsolete

"Turning submarines into underwater aircraft carriers that would carry drone-like underwater unmanned vehicles or UUVs."


Mon, Feb 23rd, 2015 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Citing the same fate that plagued the battleship -- a powerful platform too expensive to risk in battle and too difficult to defend against the modern propeller plane -- submarines may be facing a similar issue thanks to better technology capable of picking up even the quietest of subs. The solution? Turning them into a sort of underwater aircraft carriers.

“Submarines will increasingly need to shift from being front-line tactical platforms like aircraft to being host and coordination platforms like aircraft carriers” explained Clark in his piece for TNI last month. “Large UUVs and other deployed systems that are smaller and less detectable will increasingly be used instead of manned submarines for tactical missions such as coastal intelligence gathering, land attack, or anti-ship missions.”

One could imagine a scenario where UUVs move into A2/AD environments for surveillance missions, land attack or even hunting manned attack subs, allowing much more expensive and manned traditional submarines the ability to stay out of range. While there are obvious questions—feasibility, cost, if a new generation of “carrier” subs would need to be built or existing subs could be modified into such a platform—the idea seems certainly worth strong merit as a solution. A quick, informal polling I took of multiple security experts here in Washington felt that such an idea was very feasible with existing technology.



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