A British Talisman UUV (Unmanned Underwater Vehicle) recently became
the first UUV to launch a torpedo. British firm BAE has rapidly (in two years)
and cheaply (about $4 million) developed the Talisman, mainly as a demonstrator.
The Talisman weighs 1.8 tons, is 14 feet long and eight feet wide, and can stay
at sea for about 24 hours. The UUV can carry a payload of half a ton and has a
top speed of 9 kilometers an hour. Built of lightweight composites, Talisman
uses off-the-shelf thrusters for propulsion and maneuvering. The payload can
include sensors and smaller weapons for finding and destroying bottom mines.
Talisman can be carried by surface ships, or subs, and used for reconnaissance,
intelligence or combat missions.