The US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has awarded four contracts in support of its Manta Ray unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) programme.
Manta Ray is a multiphase project intended to demonstrate critical technologies for a new class of long-duration, long-range, payload-capable UUVs. DARPA envisages Manta Ray-type vehicles giving combatant commanders improved capacity, without disrupting current operations, by remaining independent of manned vessels and ports once deployed.
DARPA has selected three companies – Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Laboratories, Northrop Grumman, and Navatek – to focus on developing an integrated solution for Manta Ray technology and operational areas. Lockheed Martin has received a Phase 1 award valued at USD12.3 million, Northrop Grumman’s contract is worth USD10.1 million, and Navatek has received funding of USD5.5 million.
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