Switchblade-Armed MARTAC Devil Ray T38 Tested


The U.S. Navy drone speedboat armed with Switchblade 300 loitering munitions was able to successfully destroy multiple mock targets at sea during a recent test. A combination like this could be useful in various contexts, including providing close-in protection against swarms of small crewed and uncrewed boats. This also underscores the Navy’s interest, as well as that of the U.S. Marine Corps, in various tiers of armed drone boats capable of carrying out defensive and offensive missions.

The test involving the Switchblade-armed MARTAC Devil Ray T38 uncrewed surface vessel (USV) took place in the Persian Gulf last week. This was part of a large exercise, nicknamed Digital Talon, led by the Navy’s Task Force 59. Established in 2021, Task Force 59 is a testbed unit that is tasked with experimenting with the integration of new uncrewed and artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities into day-to-day naval operations across the Middle East. It also offers the Navy a means to explore how it might operationalize those technologies more broadly.