The US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has selected Northrop Grumman to prototype sensing capabilities using underwater biological organisms to assist in the detection and tracking of underwater threats.

Under the Persistent Aquatic Living Sensors (PALS) programme, Northrop Grumman will develop biological sensing hardware that has increased sensitivity for certain sensor modalities, achieving greater range. Artificial intelligence will be applied to observe patterns in the marine environment to help classify targets. Northrop Grumman is partnered with Coda Octopus, Duke University, University of Maryland, Baltimore County and the University of Memphis.

The detection, classification and tracking of undersea objects is a critical military capability and we are excited to work with DARPA to develop this next generation approach,” commented Northrop Grumman Vice President, Advanced Missions, Mike Meaney.

A combination of biologically-derived sensors and artificial intelligence are being developed to enhance and improve the effectiveness of underwater detection and tracking. (Image via Northrop Grumman)

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