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The US Navy Chief of Operations is interested in deploying unmanned or minimally manned vessels with strike groups as soon as the next five years, with a goal for systemic unmanned technology activities across the world by 2030. And he intends to achieve all of this even if he does not have a specific budget.
The website DefenseNews.com reports that Admiral Mike Gilday spoke to reporters in early February about the desire for the U.S. Navy to experiment with unmanned technology, fail when needed, and learn from mistakes.
In a recent 14-week exercise, an unmanned force operated and conducted seven rounds of experiments on various aspects related to unmanned systems, including the integration of cargo on larger unmanned vessels, as well as reliability testing.
These unique technologies, according to Gilday, enable the formation of new insights into unique courses of action, the acceleration of some operations owing to high performance, and the halting of different actions due to a lack of performance. He also mentioned that some of these technologies had previously been tried during the Middle East Maritime Exercise 22, which was one of the largest exercises using artificial intelligence and unmanned systems, that took place at the beginning of this year.
Nevertheless, FYDP will face budgetary challenges. In light of the government’s actions, the US Navy might be compelled to extend the 2021 provisions for another year rather than moving forward with the improvements scheduled for FY22. It is being delayed because the Biden administration has not yet published its budget proposal to Congress, according to multiple sources.