In Stalking Submarines, Practice Makes Perfect

U.S. Navy relies on Lockheed Martin’s EMATTs to sharpen crews’ anti-submarine combat skills



In the high-stakes world of anti-submarine warfare, there’s no room for error. As an enemy submarine runs silent and runs deep, identifying its subtle sounds and tracking its movements often define a mission’s success or failure.

To increase the odds of success, the U.S. Navy places considerable emphasis on training. And for these exercises, the Navy looks to Lockheed Martin to supply the “enemy” – the MK39 Expendable Mobile Anti-submarine Warfare Training Targets, more commonly known as EMATT.

The Navy recently awarded Lockheed Martin a $5 million contract to provide upgraded EMATTs for air and surface crews to use during unrestricted, open-ocean and on-range anti-submarine warfare exercises.

Lockheed Martin’s EMATT sounds and moves like a diesel submarine and is used by air and surface crews during open-ocean and on-range anti-submarine warfare exercises.

“We’ve worked with the U.S. and allied navies to provide a more affordable, flexible and proven solution to support their training missions,” said Mike Gifford, Lockheed Martin’s senior program manager for underwater vehicles. “EMATT sounds and moves like a diesel submarine and helps crews maintain their critical anti-submarine combat skills.”

Under the recent contract, Lockheed Martin’s facility in Marion, Mass., will design and deliver a second-generation variant of EMATT. This variant will provide the Navy with programmable acoustics, improved representation of enemy submarines and acoustic command links that are useable day or night in any sea state.

The Marion facility has developed and produced unmanned underwater vehicles since 1982 when the Navy awarded the company the EMATT development contract.