NEWPORT, R.I. — The Honorable James F. Geurts, Assistant Secretary of the Navy (ASN) for Research, Development and Acquisition (RDA) met with some of Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC) Division Newport’s brightest minds as he toured the center on Monday, Aug. 27.
“I enjoyed the meaningful dialogue and look forward to the impact NUWC will have on delivering capabilities to our warfighters,” Geurts said.
During his visit to Newport, Geurts challenged the command and industry to leverage their talent and focus on four areas to increase Naval capabilities.
“We must focus on delivering lethal capacity to the warfighter. ...We have to figure out how to get our agility and pivot speed up," he said. "We have to drive cost out ... and how do we develop our talent to compete and win."
As the Navy’s acquisition executive, Geurts — who was confirmed by the Senate in November 2017 — has oversight of an annual budget in excess of $60 billion and is responsible for equipping and supporting Sailors and Marines with the best platforms, systems and technology as they operate around the globe.
Geurts opened his visit by meeting with Rear Adm. Moises DelToro III, NUWC Commander; Capt. Michael Coughlin, NUWC Division Newport Commanding Officer; and Ron Vien, SES, NUWC Division Newport Technical Director in the Undersea Warfare Rapid Innovation Center (USWRIC).
A group of NUWC Newport engineers and scientists then demonstrated various projects on which they are working. Topics included machine learning; biologically-inspired sensor technologies; virtual reality and the Virginia Payload Tube; rocket propelled grenades (RPG) of the sea; submarine-launched unmanned aerial systems (UAS); and the live firing of a Harpoon cruise missile from a U.S. submarine during the 2018 Rim of the Pacific exercise.
Geurts also had the opportunity to tour the Newport’s Unmanned Undersea Vehicle (UUV) Lab and speak with a representative from the Theater Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Offset/TOPSIDE Team.
In addition to his tour of NUWC Newport, Geurts attended the Southeastern New England Defense Industry Alliance (SENEDIA) Defense Innovation Days at the Newport Marriott where he served as the keynote speaker.
NUWC Division Newport, part of NAVSEA, is one of two divisions of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center. NUWC Division Newport’s mission is to provide research, development, test and evaluation, engineering and fleet support for submarines, autonomous underwater systems, undersea offensive and defensive weapons systems, and countermeasures. NUWC’s other division is located in Keyport, Washington.
For more news from NAVSEA and the warfare centers, go to www.navsea.navy.mil.