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Thursday, November 09, 2006

Electric Boat To Work On New High-Speed Sub

General Dynamics' Electric Boat unit has been awarded a $5.7 million contract to support development of the Underwater Express, an undersea transport capable of controllable speeds upto 100 knots through supercavitation.

This Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency-funded effort will help determine the feasibility of supercavitation technology to enable a new class of high-speed underwater craft for future littoral missions thatcould involve the transport of high-value cargo and/or small units of personnel.

Supercavitation involves surrounding an object with a bubble that allows it to travel at high speed.

The contract contains two options, which if exercised, would bring the cumulative potential value to $37.1 million.

The Underwater Express Program will demonstrate stable and controllable high-speed underwater transport through supercavitation. The program will investigate and resolve critical technological issues associated with the physics of supercavitation and will culminate in a credible demonstration at a significant scale to prove that a supercavitating underwater craft is controllable at speeds up to 100 knots, the company says.


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