The U.S. Navy is going to take advantage of space to communicate deep underwater. The Navy awarded Lockheed Martin a $35.8 million contract Feb. 2 to design and produce antenna buoy systems that will expand communications capabilities of submarines while they're submerged.
The Navy's Communications at Speed and Depth (CSD) program will use expendable submarine and air-launched communications buoys to enable submarines operating below periscope depth and at tactical speeds to communicate with surface ships and land-based assets via satellite networks.
Under the contract, an industry team headed by Lockheed Martin will develop three types of comms buoys: 2 sub-launched tethered buoys that provide real-time chat, data transfer and email capabilities via either Iridium or UHF satellites and an untethered, acoustic-to-radio frequency gateway buoy that can be launched from a sub or maritime patrol aircraft to enable two-way data transfer between a submerged sub and surface assets.
Image: US Navy