The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is working with underwater communication companies to develop an underwater communication system that could be used to monitor submarines’ behavior, according to a recent report by The Verge.
The system could be installed on the submarine to monitor its underwater sensors and transmit data to the command center for further investigation.
The underwater communication technology could also be used by the military for communication between its submarines and its allies, like the United States.
DARPA has been working on the underwater communications concept for more than a decade, with the first designs to come out in 2011.
DARP says the system will be used for two reasons.
First, the system would provide the military with an alternative to relying on remote sensors, which can take up to 24 hours to reach an object underwater, according the report.
Second, the underwater communication would be used when the submarine is underwater, meaning that the submarine can communicate with its base on land, or even with other underwater bases on land.
DARpa’s underwater communication plans are set to become a reality in 2021.
In a recent presentation, DARPA’s Chris T. Prentice, director of the Naval Submarine Systems Center, said that the underwater system would allow the military to monitor the submarines’ behaviour underwater.
“We believe this system will provide the Navy with the ability to monitor a submarine from afar,” Prentice said, adding that the system could also help the Navy detect underwater threats that may pose a threat to the ship or submarines.
While the underwater technology may seem like a little futuristic for a military service that’s struggling to maintain its own submarine fleet, the potential uses of the underwater information could be huge for the future of warfare.
DARPS director of research, Paul G. DeLong, told the news outlet that the concept could be integrated into submarines that could operate in different environments, such as underwater airfields, as well as on land or in shallow water.
“Our focus in the Navy is going to be on finding ways to operate these submarines in areas where there is no land access and where the submarines cannot operate without land access,” DeLong said.
DARPs new underwater communication concept is a significant advancement over the previous systems DARPA is developing.
The technology is similar to what DARPA already is working on for unmanned underwater vehicles, which are capable of communicating with the air.
DAR’s previous underwater communication projects, which include a plan to develop a system that would communicate with submarines underwater, were all built on the premise that the technology would be useful for detecting underwater threats.
DAR is hoping to develop such a system by the end of 2021.