US Navy recovers unmanned submarine after launch


The US Navy announced Thursday that they successfully launched and recovered an unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) for the second time ever in an early December test. 

The operation, dubbed “Yellow Moray,” saw members of the USS Delaware, USS Indiana, and USS Oregon crew launch an HII Remus UUV before recovering the unmanned vehicle.

Operation Moray’s launch and recovery mission is the second such successful test focusing on UUVs the Navy has conducted – the US Navy Submarine Force Pacific succeeded in their first-ever UUV launch and recovery mission last week, according to Naval News.

The two successful tests are paving the way for the US Navy’s effort to deploy a torpedo tube-launched and recovered medium UUV by next year as they increase their push for more advanced unmanned underwater capabilities. This push includes improvements in anti-submarine warfare, electronic warfare, anti-mine defenses, and strike missions.

“The Yellow Moray system will provide the US submarine force with additional mission capability, enhancing what the US Navy’s submarines can provide our nation’s unified combatant commands around the globe,” the Navy said in a press release.

Houthi attacks rise in Red Sea

People walk down a ladder after they toured the Galaxy Leader commercial ship, seized by Yemen’s Houthis last month, off the coast of al-Salif, Yemen December 5, 2023 (credit: REUTERS/KHALED ABDULLAH)

The US Navy tests come as Yemen’s Houthi movement continues to attack and divert commercial ships they believe to be affiliated with Israel. 

The Houthis issued restrictions on maritime travel towards “occupied Palestinian territories” on Tuesday, declaring that all ships that pass through Yemen must keep radios turned on, bear the proper flag, and quickly respond to Houthi attempts at communication.

A Hong Kong-flagged, Marshall Islands-owned vessel was attacked and asked to divert to Yemen by a Houthi group, the United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) said on Thursday. On Tuesday, they carried out a military operation against a Norwegian commercial tanker delivering crude oil to an Israeli terminal.

“The Houthis have crossed a redline in the Red Sea,” President Isaac Herzog said Wednesday on X. “The US-led international activities against the Houthi terror pirates must be bolstered and strengthened in the form of a truly international coalition,” he stated. 

Herzog added that the “continued acts of terrorism and piracy against ships of all nationalities and ownerships require the entire international community to act, united, forcefully and decisively, to stamp out this vile threat to the global economy and trade.”