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USN confirms transition of TETRA ROV effort to a programme of record

The US Navy (USN) has planned to transition the TETRA remotely operated vehicle (ROV) programme from an N94 Rapid Prototyping Experimentation and Demonstration effort to a programme of record in fiscal year (FY) 2022, with plans to field an initial capability in FY 2022.

The USN describes TETRA as an ROV system that will comprise three medium-class ROVs and ancillary equipment. It will have the capacity for multiple mission payloads and is intended to be a future optional payload for the USN's Los Angeles- and Virginia-class nuclear-powered submarines.

According to the recently released US Department of Defense FY 2022 budget request, the USN has requested USD3.5 million to procure three TETRA ROVs and one ancillary equipment kit (including vehicle fiber pack, launcher, launcher fiber pack and control and display console) in FY 2022. According to the budget documents, it is expected that Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) will issue a request for proposal in July this year, with a view to awarding a contract in July 2022. Delivery of the systems will commence from March 2023.

The TETRA ROV prototype is being designed and developed by Oceaneering International, Inc under a USD8.3 million contract awarded by Naval Undersea Warfare Center in February. Work includes engineering and integration efforts associated with the design, development, test, and delivery of a prototype, and is expected to be completed by February 2022.

Various modifications to the TETRA ROV system, such as completion of autonomous recovery and docking, upgrading vehicle endurance and thrusters, and development of a modular payload bay is scheduled for completion in FY 2021. Other tasks that remain to be completed in FY 2021 include procurement of payloads and integration of the vehicle into the Submarine Warfare Federated Tactical Systems payload control system.

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