NewsManta Ray drone unveiled: A game-changer in underwater defence

Manta Ray drone unveiled: A game-changer in underwater defence

"Manta Ray" is the most advanced American unmanned marine drone, constituting a formidable asset in naval warfare.
"Manta Ray" is the most advanced American unmanned marine drone, constituting a formidable asset in naval warfare.
Images source: © Google Earth, Northrop Grumman

25 June 2024 18:09

A special marine unit has docked at the Port Hueneme naval base in California. Its public appearance caught attention and spurred extensive discussion among internet users. Developed in secrecy, this water drone's design has been closely guarded until now.

Named the "Manta Ray" due to its resemblance to a giant manta ray with wing-like fins, the design aims to detect underwater threats. It has been engineered by Northrop Grumman Corporation.

The first photos of the mysterious drone surfaced on social media in May. The manufacturer claims that in February and March, it underwent full-scale tests off the coast of southern California.

"Manta Ray" - a human-made manta ray, a formidable underwater machine

According to the British "Daily Mail," the aerospace group described its design as an "extra large" glider intended for long-duration underwater missions. The manufacturer highlights that this is the first piece of equipment created using pioneering UUV (Unmanned Underwater Vehicle) technology.

The marine drone was developed under the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) programme of the United States Department of Defense. Northrop Grumman also disclosed that thanks to its modular design, the drone can be disassembled and transported in standard shipping containers.

It is also known that in the event of an urgent maritime threat, the unmanned "Manta Ray" can undertake extraordinary special operations. It can be deployed much faster than traditional submarines.

Until recently, its pioneering design, enabling prolonged underwater operations, was a secret. Last week, Northrop Grumman revealed more details about its automated submarine "Manta Ray" in several published videos. These materials showcase the first test dives.

The "Manta Ray" is part of a project by the United States Navy that aims to develop a new class of underwater drones capable of much longer missions.

The underwater vehicle may be a very formidable and dangerous marine weapon. As the British newspaper notes, Ukrainian forces are effectively using much smaller, cheaper technologies to sink Russian ships.

See also