Mr. Cordell has a BS Engineering Cal. State Univ. and MA Sociology American Univ. Wash DC. He was a Petty Officer (Aviation Machinist Mate), in the Korean War. He has nine US & German Patents, three patents are pending. His interest is in using his experience to help keep the Navy strong.
The purpose of this essay is to describe a method for tracking the precise location of an already detected, ultra quiet submarine. Helicopters dipping sonobuoys can detect an ultra quiet submarine, but like all sonobuoy searching, it cannot track or reliably sense an ultra quiet submarine that was detected and its location cannot be accurately remembered in the single position determined and known for some fraction of a second. This was proven by the US Navy in 2014 when it invited a Swedish ultra quiet submarine to try to escape an aircraft that it was tracking after it was detected. It disappeared and was not redetected by the Navy during the exercise.
The tracking of the submarine without losing the submarine’s position is the helicopter’s task. The proposed method provides the opportunity to instantaneously begin tracking the submarine both vertically and horizontally. After detection of a perceived ultra- quiet submarine, the helicopter automatically and instantly launches a wide swarm of sensors in the known submarine’s area. These sensors, called Monitor Marbles, continually monitor and self track the submarine’s movement (Fig. 1). The submarine’s position data is continually transferred to the control center on the aircraft from some or all of the monitor marbles. As the location becomes more precise, smaller swarms of a different type of sensor named Sentinel Marbles, described in Fig. 2, are launched into the even better known area. If the submarine dives for safer layers or executes a hiding maneuver, the swarm detaches some of the sonar marbles and they will individually sink; sonar pinging will be used for sending the current submarine’s location to the control center (Fig. 3).
Background: Two patents have been granted for both torpedo and submarine detection and tracking (Whitesell et al (1999) 1 & Novick et al (2009) 2 claim both tethered and randomly placed, freely drifting sonobuoys). They claim not only to track but also to detect ultra quiet submarines. Novick was granted a patent 10 years after Whitesell. This is significant because Novick describes serious problems distinguishing between the targets, and the weaknesses of random, free-drifting sonobuoys for detection; for example there can be false detection between a ship and a submarine.” The detection and tracking weaknesses of sonobuoys, either free drifting or tethered, and not motorized or given specific motion freedoms, do not allow for changing position or attitude. The tracking suffers from the Novick-described weaknesses of layer, depth, and surface weather conditions, among other short or longer interruptions or error-prone sensing of the data being collected and transferred to controllers. Depending on how the sonobuoys were launched, and whether they are driven or drifting, the initial launch will not have a good a chance to begin tracking compared to the first swarm of the monitor marbles since the marbles are launched directly in the area of the submarine.
Objects of the Proposal: The object is for the aircraft with dipping sonobuoy to reliably track the ultra quiet submarine that it has detected. It is not the purpose of this essay to describe or determine weaponry.
Summary: After the ultra quiet submarine has been detected, the continuous tracking of the known horizontal position is begun by the aircraft launching the very large swarm of Monitor Marbles to quickly begin tracking over a somewhat large area (Fig. 1). There is only one such swarm, and the next and subsequent swarms are Sentinel Marbles that each swarm has a smaller area to track (Fig. 2). If the submarine maneuvers downward, then the Sentinel Marbles are launched and one or more of the marbles can be released to sink (Fig. 3). When the first and subsequent swarms of marbles are released at the closest known point of the last position, some or all of the swarm marbles immediately send the calculated locations to the control center. This is repeated as often as necessary until the submarine stops to hide under a layer that it considers a safe haven, or executes some other intelligent maneuver. When the swarm of marbles detects a new horizontal motion in any direction, the feedback to the control center decides how dense and when to release the next marble swarm. Each swarm will normally have fewer marbles than the previous swarm, since the data indicate that the area of the target is tighter than the last swarm. The system can send a swarm with more marbles if the area expands. The system of sending swarms of marbles has the function of detecting the horizontal and vertical changes of the submarine’s position. The vertical changes of the submarine’s position between swarms are performed by some marbles being released to sink and for a limited time to sense the submarine within a closer position. This marble release is independent of the swarm’s position. There is no reliable maneuver of moving up with an upward movement of the submarine, but a new swarm can be sent to the best known area position.
There are numerous sports, toys and military launchers available, and with changes they can be customized as necessary.
Brief description of the drawings: The marbles shown in the three figures are about 3 cms. (1 in.)
Figure 1: This Monitor Marble is slightly lighter than the sentinel marble. These marbles are released in the initial swarm in greater multitude since that swarm reaches the least exact known submarine position
Figure 2: This Sentinel Marble is very similar to the monitor marble, but is shown with its computing power, the same logic as the monitor marble. For simplicity, neither the identical logic circuit boards (8) nor the identical antennas (3) are shown on the two marble types. The circuit board is shown stylized but with its size as fitting within the marble. The large battery on the sentinel marble (11) is required for executing all tasks and as an extra weight when it is released to sink.
Figure 3: The special sentinel marble for tracking silent sub- marines shows the float (14) containing the antenna, a heavy battery (11) to keep the antenna upright, and the tether (15) with integrated wiring to the antenna; wiring and its simple tether release is not shown. The lower part of the circuit logic board, heavy electronic elements shown in Fig. 2 to keep the marble upright and submerged are not shown here since the sentinel marbles (Fig. 2) and (Fig. 3) are identical. Only the algorithms and the capability to release itself for sinking distinguishes sentinel marble (Fig. 3) from the identical sentinel marble (Fig. 2).
Detailed description of the drawings The monitor and sentinel marbles are used to track a conventional, ultra quiet submarine before it can slip away. For this purpose, the sentinel marble (Fig. 2) with its superior sonar processing capability and transmission strength, will be launched by a helicopter within the area where the detected submarine position is calculated to be. As the submarine sneaks away in any direction, the marbles transmit data to the control center, and the helicopter can continue launching fewer marbles but in the continually calculated smaller area. This continues until the submarine descends below some layer that will hide it or it executes some other hiding maneuver.
However, the marbles can be silent to the submarine so it will never know when it is safe to ascend again or even when it can safely leave the area. To compensate for noise in rough seas, a special version of the sentinel marble can be tethered to a small weighted ball that keeps the antenna upright and out of the water (Figure 3) For sentinel marbles that follow a submarine down and maintain continuous tracking for some interval, one or more are released from the tether and the marbles sink. One-way communication to the surface marbles (Fig. 3) is via sonar pinging.
Additional Functions: An example of a future function is a small balloon and a mini compressed air tank to slow down the sinking of some of the sentinel marbles (Fig. 3)
It is suggested that the reader compare this proposal with the patents Novick 1 and Whitesell 2 “Backgrounds of the Invention” (especially sonobuoy arrays deployed from long-range aircraft; not described in the patents!) and the “Summaries of the Invention”: Although both patents state that they track submarines, it is not decipherable just how the tracking functions with the “special computers” and the equipment.