Washington: Riding on the success of drones in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Somalia, Yemen and Syria campaigns, the United States is preparing to deploy a fleet of drone warships. It has come to light that the US navy had made this demand to the Trump administration. The US military analysts have claimed that these drone warships equipped with surveillance capabilities and torpedoes will play a major role in marine warfare.
A drone warship USS Sea Hunter was inducted into the US Navy, a few months ago. Currently deployed at the Hawaii Island, this warship has completed its final testing and will be entrusted the responsibility of surveillance in the marine sector on the western coast of the United States. Sea Hunter warship is equipped with anti-submarine technology. The United States is said to have developed this drone warship keeping in view the Chinese submarines in the Indo-Pacific sector.
After the success of Sea Hunter, the US navy wants to procure a fleet of drone warships. The Sea Hunter is 132 feet in length and weighs 140 tonnes. But it is claimed that the US Navy has demanded drone warships, 300 feet long and weighing 2,000 tonnes. The US Navy has also demanded to increase the radar sensor capabilities of these drone warships, to make the surveillance and patrolling more efficient.
At the same time, the US Navy is also thinking of deploying drone aircrafts on these warships. Sea Hunter warship has provision for a helipad. The analysts and media connected with the defence sector have said that it would widen the scope for the US Navy.
Tests were conducted for operations of drones from the US aircraft carriers. X-47B stealth drone of Northrop Grumman had taken off and landed during the tests. A serious thought is being given to the deployment of these stealth drones on the proposed drone warships of the US Navy. If this succeeds, the protection of the US aircraft carriers also will be entrusted to these drone ships.
Along with these drone ships, the US Navy has expedited the development of drone submarines. Russia and China have made major advances in this sector and Russia has already started research with the help of drone submarines in the Arctic sector. At the same time, it is claimed that Russia has secretly deployed these submarines for the security of this region whereas, a few years ago, US analysts had claimed that China had deployed drone submarines in the South China Sea. In view of all this, the United States also has increased movements for development of drone submarines.
Meanwhile, along with the development of the drone warships and submarines the United States is working on the development of a drone, for refuelling the drones during flight. Boeing has prepared the MQ-25 Sting Ray plan for this purpose and it is claimed that the first refuelling drone of the United States will be ready for deployment in four years’ time.