Undersea Combat Includes Way More Than Submarines

While submarines are vital to undersea warfare, success in the domain requires the integration of a much broader array of systems and technologies, including artificial intelligence and unmanned systems.

“Undersea warfare is a lot more than just submarine versus submarine. My job is to make sure our undersea forces—and that includes our ballistic missile submarines, our attack submarines, our carrier strike group ASW [anti-submarine warfare] forces, maritime patrol aircraft, fixed systems, unmanned and autonomous systems, all of that—are able to integrate as part of an undersea battle force,” explains Rear Adm. Richard Seif, USN, commander, Undersea Warfighting Development Center (UWDC), Groton, Connecticut.

The UWDC mission is to support undersea superiority, in part by integrating a wide array of technologies and developing doctrine for multidomain undersea warfare. Priorities include cross-domain tactical development and capability development; wargaming; in-depth analysis of real-world operations; rapid integration of new weapons, sensors and new technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML); and direct support of deployed undersea forces. Based in Groton, the UWDC also has detachments in Norfolk, Virginia, and San Diego and includes an Arctic Submarine Lab and a Tactical Analysis Group.

“We have to integrate across domains. When I say across domains, I mean space and cyber all the way to the seafloor and then integrate all of that combat power as part of a broader joint force.”

AI Bot running SUBSIM, what could go wrong?!