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Showing posts from January 11, 2015

Representation of Unmanned Systems in Naval Analytical Modeling and Simulation: What are we really simulating?

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Editor's Note: This article is reprinted with permission from the Naval Postgraduate School's "CRUSER News.

By Professor Curtis Blais, faculty at the Naval Postgraduate School's Modeling, Virtual Environments and Simulation (MOVES) Institute. Contact: clblais(at) nps.edu 

Combat models are used in major assessments such as Quadrennial Defense Reviews for Naval system acquisition and future force structure decisions. For several years, the Navy has been adding capabilities to the Synthetic Theater Operations Research Model (STORM) originally developed by the U.S. Air Force. Similarly, the Army and Marine Corps employ a specific analytical model called the Combined Arms Analysis Tool for the 21st Century (COMBATXXI) to evaluate major proposed changes in materiel and associated warfighting operations and tactics. The CRUSER Charter identifies numerous Naval initiatives for study and development of unmanned systems, such as the Unmanned Carrier Launched Airborne Sur…

Largest Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Swarm

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Researchers at Austria's University of Graz have demonstrated the largest collection of swarming autonomous underwater vehicles with their Collective Cognitive Robots (CoCoRo) project.  A total of 41 autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) were assembled for recent swarm testing at the University's Artificial Life Lab. Though funded by the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme for Research (FP7) with the intention of developing civilian innovations for environmental monitoring and research, CoCoRo has implications for future military unmanned underwater vehicle swarm activity.

Under development since 2011, CoCoRo's swarm demonstration consists of three types of robots: Jeff is an agile fish-like robot with various pressure and magnetic sensors for obstacle detection, avoidance, and navigation.  The swarm also featured 20 saucer-shaped Lily robots that randomly search for objects while communicating with each other using blue-LED lights.  The final robot is a semi…