Orca dives in for latest testing
Orca, Boeing’s extra-large uncrewed undersea vehicle (XLUUV) program with the U.S. Navy, recently completed its first phase of at-sea testing with a series of autonomous subsea maneuvers.
Why it matters: The long-endurance Orca XLUUV is designed to operate autonomously for extended periods — significantly enhancing its operational range and effectiveness in challenging maritime environments.
Driving the news: “With each at-sea testing milestone reached, the Maritime & Intelligence Systems (MI&S) team moves closer to delivering operational XLUUV capability to the U.S. Navy,” said Ann Stevens, vice president of M&IS.
Go deeper: Boeing has developed autonomous undersea vehicles and technology since the 1970s, collaborating with the U.S. Navy and Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) on a number of underwater vehicle projects in recent years.
What’s next: The M&IS team integrates a 34-foot (10.4-meter) payload section and continues at-sea activities with Orca.
- The integrated version is approximately 85 feet (26 meters) and weighs over 80 tons (73 metric tons).
- The team will continue testing this version to include an at-sea demonstration for the DARPA Hunter program.