General Dynamics Electric Boat has won a $20 million, 18-month contract from the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to continue development of shaftless propulsion technology for submarines.
Electric Boat was one of two teams that participated in the first phase of the DARPA Tango Bravo program, to develop concepts for a submarine propulsion system that would not require a propulsion shaft that penetrates the hull.
After reviewing both teams’ proposals, DARPA selected Electric Boat to build and test a series of small- and large-scale technology demonstrators to validate the performance predicted for its design.
The designation Tango Bravo refers to the term “technology barrier.” This program is examining certain technologies to determine whether they can meet stringent submarine performance requirements while reducing ship-acquisition and life-cycle costs and improving the warfighting capabilities and mission adaptability of future submarines.
Electric Boat has won two other technology demonstration contracts under the program, one to develop externally mounted submarine weapons, and the other to radically reduce ship infrastructure.