Underwater Drones

I remember reading a few years ago about Liquid Robotics ocean traveling wave glider. It used the bouyancy of waves to propel a robot across 9,000 nautical miles in just over a year.  It is a pretty amazing feat. And such technology offers the potential to monitor ocean temperatures, currents, etc

Apparently, the Navy has taken interest and is launching its own “glider” drones. The technology can potentially provide numerous benefits to security and underwater communication. Drones could be equipped to monitor our coastal waters for submarines. They could also be used to relay messages to our submerged subs.

I feel this is a positive expenditure of defense funds. I am very skeptical about the need for a new aircraft carrier. I see little benefit. 5 would do, two in the Pacific, two in the Atlantic, one in the gulf. Maybe 7 if you wanted if you wanted to have two that could patrol the world and rattle our sabers.

But if you ask me what we need. I’d say it’s a small pocket carrier that can support a couple of helicopters and a dozen or so drones. And engage in coastal monitoring and anti-submarine operations. And not for the U.S. Navy but for the U.S. Coast Guard.

USCGC Seminole Drone Carrier

The U.S. Navy needs a submersible carrier that can carry two jumpjets or four helicopters. That would facilitate tactical strikes on sensitive targets. Move in close to shore. Launch SEALS/Marine strike units. Return, land, submerge.  I’ve long thought this a far more useful tool in our present day world than large easily sinkable carriers and surface ships. At times I thought I was asking to much of technology, but I truly felt such a ship design is in fact feasible. And apparently, it was, as Japanese built such designs toward the end of WWII to strike the U.S. mainland. If Japan could do it with WWII technology, I am sure we could implement it far more effectively today.

 

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Published in: on December 23, 2013 at 5:14 pm  Comments (3)  
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SEMPER PARATUS

Great article on a Haitian who was rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard, now about to graduate from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy.  Going from rescuee to rescuer.  His tale almost sounds like it could be the makings of a movie.

http://news.yahoo.com/coast-guard-grad-rescued-sea-boy-162002706.html

I was in fact a cadet in the Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut when the Haitian & Cuban rescue operations were taking place.  Many do not realize the labor and work that the smaller older Navy of the United States puts in every day.  Coast Guardsmen have served in all the major wars and conflicts. They also are there conducting rescues, maintaining navigable waters, and preserving the environment.

Viewing this article I am reminded of my own time aboard the Cutter Eagle, the same uniforms, hooded sweat shirts, my own climb up the mast….the adventure and pride of serving in one of the few military services in the world that actually serves saving lives not just taking them.  

Sadly, not anywhere near as glorius on the TV screen, the Coast Guard often operates on a meager budget with aging ships.  Now their role is more important than ever, protecting our coastline from terrorist threats.  If there is a place in our defense budget where we should be dumping funds, it’s the U.S.  Coast Guard.

SEMPER PARATUS

 

Semper Paratus

SEMPER PARATUS

“Always Ready”

There will forever be a fond place in my heart for the United States Coast Guard.  Having only briefly been a member of said service; for a mere six month stint at the Academy, one would not imagine how deeply set in my soul it is…

It’s a good motto…, one of two that I have served. Both are strangely akin as the other is “Be Prepared”, the motto of the Boy Scouts of America.  One cannot be ready if one is not prepared.

In troubled times, adhering to and living  such mottos can be the difference of life or death. I do not know that I’d say America is in troubled times, perhaps troubling times would be a more apt term. We are at a period which could easily lead us into troubled times.

As such, I’ve been seeking how to be both prepared and ready.  And what am I preparing for?  For what need must I be ready?  I don’t know specifically.  The zombieapocalypse?  Naw… but perhaps other troubles? Economic hardship? Food shortages? Riots? Loss of liberty? Or perhaps a hurricane, earthquake or other natural disaster? All of these are possibilities…

What it really boils down to is this. I endeavor to be prepared and ready to:

a) protect my family and our well-being

b) provide aid to my neighbors and community

c) come to the call to serve if my nation requires it of me

Note, nation does not necessarily equate to the government entity, but rather to “We the People” and the ideals of the Constitution and Liberty. I swore an oath to protect this nation from powers both foreign and domestic.  I took that oath when I entered service in the United States Coast Guard.  I do not consider that oath relinquished upon my departing, I believe it continues to this day.

I hear some talk about stock piling food, arms, ammo, savings, etc.  I believe such to be prudent. Americans, myself included, have forgotten how to be thrifty, how to be savers who store up during the fat years for when the lean years come.  But I believe it important to think beyond our individual selves.

We were asked after 9-11 to stockpile food, water and supplies for a minimum of 3 days.  How many Americans in fact did this?  If a day of trouble were to come, such as hurricane Katrina brought to New Orleans.  Are you prepared to handle more than yourself?  If your neighbors homes were washed away and yours still stood. Could you offer them food, water, and protection?

If not, you’re a loner. A lone wolf is not as strong as the community of a pack of wolves.  Americans have grown into lone wolves, with most of our attentions focused on ourselves.  Communities have become merely a group of families living in a neighborhood where all promise to keep their grass golf course green.

I’ve been fondly thinking back on memories of my time in the Coast Guard. Having just re-connected with a few service mates. As I do so, it seemed fitting to pass on to you the motto, and share my thoughts regarding the need for us to become a “communities” again.

First they came for the Jews
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the Communists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for me
and there was no one left
to speak out for me.

– Pastor Martin Niemöller

If you do not know your neighbors, how will they speak out for you?  Or you for them?

***

NOTES:

Regarding the history of “Semper Paratus”, the first recorded reference was in the New Orleans Bee newspaper in the 1830’s in reference to the Revenue Cutter Service (which later became the U.S. Coast Guard).[1] In 1910 it appeared on the Coast Guard ensign,[2] and was put to music in the 20’s.

Further information available here.

Published in: on May 6, 2009 at 3:59 am  Comments (1)  
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