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New Torpedo Tube-launched Drones Will Turn U.S. Attack Sub Fleet into ‘UUV Motherships,’ Says Navy


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ARLINGTON, Va. – In the near future, the U.S. nuclear attack submarine fleet will be able to launch and recover an underwater robot from a torpedo tube, Navy officials said this week.

The torpedo-sized Razorback — designed to extend the awareness of a submarine— has been in testing on the Navy’s attack boats for more than a year but requires a dry deck shelter and divers to recover the 600-pound UUV. The current procedure has blunted the utility of the system, Submarine Force commander Vice Adm. Bill Houston said on Tuesday at the Naval Submarine League’s annual symposium

“The Medium UUV can go on any one of our submarines. That is a priority for us. We have no problem launching UUVs. That’s easy. The recovery part has been the critical aspect,” Houston said at the Naval Submarine League’s annual symposium.

The Navy tested a system earlier this year to recover the Medium UUV via torpedo tube and is close to deploying the system in the “very near future,” said Rear. Adm. Doug Perry, the director of submarine warfare for the Office of Chief of Naval Operations (OPNAV N97).

“While the submarine is moving, the UUV has to find that torpedo tube and drive in,” Perry told reporters when describing the recovery process.

“We have the system working. We haven’t fielded that at the fleet level yet. We expect in the very near future we will have that system operational.”:snip:

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Leave up hope it has been tested more than the MK 14 torpedo.

Feb 12, 2020

Today we look at what happens when you mix the Bureau of Ordnance with a cost-cutting Congress and a few people pathologically incapable of admitting to making a mistake, then try and get a working torpedo out of them.


From The Comments

Bill Leach

2 years ago

I was serving on a nuclear sub when a dummy torpedo that we fired turned around and hit us, bouncing off of our hull, only to return and hit us again... several times! Trust me, that experience does get one to do a bit of thinking.


As an aside

This comment shows one of the problems I have with so many Military Techno-Thrillers. Everything Always Works, Everyone is always Squared Away, On The Ball. No Screw Ups, Gold Bricks.

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