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SAIC building USV prototype

Nov. 12, 2012 at 1:33 PM

MCLEAN, Va., Nov. 12 (UPI) -- The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has selected SAIC to build and test a prototype anti-submarine unmanned surface vessel.

The contract, for DARPA's Anti-Submarine Warfare Continuous Trail Unmanned Vessel program, is a cost-plus-fee vehicle for three years and is for phases two and three of the project. It is worth $58 million.

The award, however, also features an eight-month option for a fourth phase, which is worth $1 million.

"Drawing on SAIC's technical depth in marine hydrodynamics, ship design, sensors, and advanced autonomy, we're confident that the SAIC team will meet or exceed DARPA's requirements for ACTUV, a revolutionary autonomous maritime vessel," said Pete Mikhalevsky, Science Applications International Corp.'s senior vice president and operations manager. "This exemplifies the kind of technical innovation that is the hallmark of SAIC solving our customers' toughest problems."

The DARPA ACTUV program is to develop an unmanned autonomous surface vessel that could track a diesel-electric submarine overtly for months over thousands of miles with minimal human input.

SAIC, which provided conceptual design services in Phase One of the program, will provide a final design and production plan for the ACTUV prototype and build it. Testing of the prototype by the government would take place in Phase Four of the project.

SAIC's teammates on the project include Oregon Iron Works, Christensen Shipyards, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Carnegie Mellon University.

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