The US company Northrop Grumman recently unveiled the prototype of a mini-torpedo named Very Lightweight Torpedo, or VLWT, based on a design developed by the US Navy and the Pennsylvania State University. This new ultralight torpedo should be offered as part of the Compact Rapid Attack Weapon (CRAW) program aimed at developing a very light torpedo capable of acting as a "hard-kill" self-defense weapon integrated into the AN/BYG-1 weapon system of the Virginia class submarines (and later on other nuclear submarines).
However, beyond the underwater applications, Northrop Grumman plans to fully exploit the potential of its ultra-light torpedo by integrating it on board its naval drone MQ-8C Fire Scout. For Northrop Grumman, this would be an opportunity to offer a real multirole naval UCAV (combat drone) capable of competing with or even replacing in certain uses the MH-60 Seahawk helicopter.
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