Oh that? That’s just my CUSV, thanks for asking

NORFOLK, Va. (Feb. 12, 2020) A developmental, early variant of the Common Unmanned Surface Vehicle (CUSV) autonomously conducts maneuvers on the Elizabeth River during its demonstration during Citadel Shield-Solid Curtain 2020 at Naval Station Norfolk. (U.S. Navy photos by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Rebekah M. Rinckey/Released)

The Navy has been testing an armed 40-foot drone boat developed by Textron at Norfolk this month.

From Maritime Executive: 

The Common Unmanned Surface Vehicle (CUSV), built by the defense conglomerate Textron, is a 40-foot remotely-operated launch with long endurance and range. CUSV was designed in the 2000s as a component of the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) mine countermeasures “mission package.” It has large towing and payload capacities for minesweeping and mine neutralization systems, and it was designed to be modular and adaptable for a variety of other tasks.

The CUSV test during Solid Curtain aimed to evaluate the platform’s suitability for defending moored warships – in this case, the destroyer USS Arleigh Burke and the carrier USS John C. Stennis. The boat was fitted with a remotely-operated .50 caliber machine gun station with cameras, sensors and a data link to a control station on shore. During the exercise, it intercepted a suspect boat (a manned Navy launch) and hailed it, then fired simulated shots to “disable” it.

The vessel likely has several radar reflectors to make it seem bigger to local traffic. In a real-world scenario, this bad boy could prove interesting in a littoral

The auto .50 seems to be an FN/M3 remote control mount with an LRAD

Pierside. Note the 41-foot ex-USCG UTM behind it, for scale

A better view

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