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Events | Forces - Special Ops | New Systems Tech | Northrop-Grumman | Submarines | USA

ASDS Mini-Sub Program Goes to Davey Jones’ Locker

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ASDS(click to view full) The Advanced SEAL delivery System mini-sub was intended to be the successor to the previous SDV (SEAL/Swimmer Delivery Vehicle) carried on US Benjamin Franklin Class (SSBN-640) attack submarines. The idea was that unlike the SDV, which is flooded and requires SCUBA gear, the 16 Navy SEALs, MARSOC, or other covert action personnel in an ASDS would be able to arrive at their mission drier, warmer, and less fatigued. ASDS mini-subs would be launched from the converted SSGN Ohio Class Special Ops/Land Strike submarines, from Virginia Class (SSN-744) submarines, from the improved Los Angeles Class (SSN-688I) subs Charlotte (SSN 766) and Greeneville (SSN 772), or from the well decks of amphibious assault ships like the LHD Wasp Class or LPD-17 San Antonio Class. It would also fit in a C-17 Globemaster or C-5 Galaxy aircraft for rapid transport to an appropriate launch platform. Woulda. Coulda. Shoulda. That’s all in the past now, because the program just sank. Failure to meet specifications, skyrocketing budgets, and the resulting political pressure have made the ASDS program a one-way mission. Interestingly, Northrop-Grumman spokeswoman Debbi McCallam told Inside The Navy that “ASDS-1 has been an operational asset for the Navy for almost […]

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