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Editors Note: Tile annual Submarine Technology Symposium, co-sponsored by the Naval Submarine League and the
Applied Physics Laborat01y of Johns Hopkins University, will be held at JHUIAPL May J3th, 14th and 15th. VADM George Eme1y is tire Chairman of tire Symposium. His welcoming remarks to the Symposium are presented here. He also has selected an abstract for one of the papers lo be presented in each of the four technology sessions in order to illustrate. for those members of the League not attending, the type and breadth of the subjects normally discussed during a Sub Tech Symposium. Those sessions will cover SSGN, Tactical Survival, Technologies for Strategic Flexibility and Future Technologies. In addition, he has included a summary agenda for the operational briefings to be given in Session III, Force Needs.


Welcome to the 2008 Submarine Technology Symposium, the twenty-first in a series of Symposia stretching back to 1988. During the next three days, you will hear from an exceptional group of talented individuals representing industry, laboratories, academia and the Navy. Each will bring a fresh view of technologies designed to enhance the submarine’s military value to Joint Warfare Commanders.

Joint Warfare Commanders repeatedly reiterate operational requirements for submarines that far exceed their availability. No remedy for this shortfall is visible on the near horizon. Hence the need for this Symposium, like its immediate predecessors, to bring forth new and improved technologies designed to increase the range of capabilities the submarine brings to warfare commanders in support of emerging military demands.

The theme of the 2008 Symposium is Assure, Dissuade, Deter ••• Through Innovative Technologies. The sessions presented on the Symposium’s first day will focus on:

  • The SSGN, and
  • Tactical Survival

Presentations during these sessions will present technologies with the potential to enhance the war fighting capabilities of the SSGN to include command and control, flexible weaponry and UUVs. The afternoon session, Tactical Survival, recognizes the growing capabilities of potential foes and presents several intriguing technologies that may improve the submarine’s ability to survive in a hostile environment.

The second day of the Symposium will establish a benchmark for the 2009 symposium by informing you of the Force Commanders’ Needs. This session will include presentations from submarine commanders who have recently completed important missions. The afternoon session will focus on technologies that enhance Strategic Flexibility, technologies that may play an important role in the design of the next generation SSBN. It has been some time since the Symposium included a session devoted to Future Technologies, technologies that may play a significant role in enhancing the submarine’s capability in the out years. Hence, the final day of the Symposium will do just that, including an extended session devoted to Tango Bravo projects.

In addition to our luncheon and banquet guests of honor, Keynote Speakers will kick-off each session. New to the Symposium will be remarks by Ms. Allison Stiller, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development and Acquisition) Ship Programs, and Dr. Anthony Tether, Director, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. The Symposium will conclude with a Submarine Leadership Roundtable with participants from the Submarine Force, DARPA, NAVSEA, OPNAV, and the Chief of Naval Research.

We trust that you find the 2008 Submarine Technology Symposium both satisfying and stimulating. We welcome your comments and recommendations for improving future symposiums. A survey has been provided in this pamphlet to facilitate your feedback.


Nuclear submarines remain essential to American military operations whether the mission is to ensure access to littoral waters, provide a strategic deterrent, protect the sea-lanes or support the Global War on Terror. The flexibility of the nuclear submarine to support any and all military operations has created a demand for submarines that far exceeds their availability. In support of National tasking nuclear submarines are capable of sustained, worldwide, forward deployed, independent operations. They can hold a potential adversary at risk; conduct covert, non-provocative and sustained intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance operations in a hostile environment not accessible to other forces; detect and map minefields in advance of a battle force, conduct covert insertion and extraction of special forces; attack targets at land or at sea and provide anti-submarine warfare protection to an expeditionary strike group … all with minimum risk to this highly survivable war-fighting platform.

The military utility and value of submarines is universally accepted. Because of the visibility and expense of creating a surface fleet of sufficient numbers and capability to challenge America’s dominance of the ocean surface, submarines have become the weapons system of choice for many of our potential adversaries. The open market for advanced submarines and submarine systems and weapons is replete with a wide variety of air-independent propulsion systems, capable sensors and combat control systems, and new concepts in weapons. Submarines are best suited to meet these emerging threats to our joint forces, a reality now recognized by Fleet and Theater Commanders. Unfortunately, requirements for submarines far exceed their availability, and future force levels will only exacerbate this condition. Therefore the challenge for government and industry is to capture for each and every submarine the maximum capability in unique and enduring war-fighting capabilities. The continuous infusion of innovative and advanced technology will enable that goal.

Over the last century, the Submarine Force has a history of transforming itself to match capabilities to requirements. In today’s world, requirements not only continue to grow, but the acceleration of technology change continues to challenge our ability to ensure the submarine force maintains today’s advantage tomorrow. In addition to identifying the technology our submarines require in order to address current and future National tasking, this symposium will examine several near-term advanced developmental technologies, as well as conceptual technologies likely to enhance the submarine’s future operational capability.

Our objective is to stimulate your energy and creativity to improve and expand the capability of United States submarines to support National security objectives. Your active participation is encouraged.

Naval Submarine League

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