An interesting look inside UUVRON 1
Last fall the U.S. Navy established its first-ever unmanned undersea vehicle squadron, UUVRON 1, at NUWC Keyport, Washington. Unmanned Undersea Vehicle Squadron One’s mission is to develop the tactics, techniques, and procedures that will shape how the Navy uses UUVs in the future. It is part of the secret squirrels of Submarine Development Squadron 5, which is the operational command that oversees the trio of special mission-oriented Seawolf-class nuclear-powered fast attack submarines USS Seawolf, Connecticut and Jimmy Carter.
Equipped with a wide array of assets, the 35-strong unit deployed a detachment to Argentina last year in the search for the lost submarine ARA San Juan that included a Blue Fin UUV and 6 Sailors.
“We’ll use UUVs in those areas that are too dangerous to put a manned vessel, and on the other side, we’ll use UUVs where it’s just too mundane for a long-term mission to keep a sailor out there,” CDR Scott Smith told the Kitsap Sun. “Those are really the two places I see UUVs working, but we’ll never replace the manned systems. In my mind, we’ll always need submarines out there doing what submarines do.”