One of the surprises in the Navy’s FY2020 budget request was the inclusion of “two large unmanned surface vessels” in the ship construction submission.
As we noted earlier this week (see story), the Navy’s existing Medium Displacement Unmanned Surface Vessel (MDUSV), Sea Hunter is already notching up records — including an autonomous round trip from San Diego to Pearl Harbor. But how do you get from that promising start to those two larger vessels?
Interestingly, this week a Sources Sought/RFI notice was posted on the FBO website saying that “the Navy is conducting market research in accordance with FAR Part 10 to determine if sources exist that are capable of satisfying the Navy’s anticipated program requirement for Large Unmanned Surface Vessels (LUSV).”
The posting says that the complete Sources Sought/RFI posting contains controlled technical data that cannot be posted to the FBO website and will only be made available to U.S. Department of Defense contractors.