The Millennium Challenge Exercise in 2002 was launched for assessing the U.S. Navy’s defense competence in the upcoming years. The assessment exposed the vulnerability that a sizeable infiltration was possible in case of a large swam boat attack. Gregory Sancoff, CEO of Juliet Marine Systems, said, ‘U.S. has never found a way to stop these type of swarm attack against the U.S. fleet, they are incredibly small targets.’ The solution comes in the form of The Ghost!
Sancoff believes that bigger vessel chips such as Littoral Combat Ships (LCS) are not optimal for close shore encounters and become a liability during such circumstances. Juliet Marine Systems is a small startup from Portsmouth, N.H., and has come up with a small high-velocity watercraft known as The Ghost to operate in close shore encounters.
The Ghost has been named ‘The Ghost’ because of its stealth abilities. It features a variety of weaponry and is ideal for use during hostile situations. Sancoff has a lot of startups to his names and keeping up with the spirit of entrepreneurs, he didn’t wait for a contract from the government but rather took his motivation from millennium challenge exercise and created The Ghost to counter the problem. It cost him 20 million dollars of his own money and some funding from other stakeholders for developing The Ghost. After about four years of work and research that was carried out by naval experts and engineers, a full-scale prototype was created in 2007.
The Ghost has been designed cleverly, and its appearance is capable of throwing off the radar of most large-size ships. The cockpit is located above the water surface thus enabling the driver to carry on despite destabilizing waves. If the Ghost is travelling at speeds higher than eight knots, its body comprised of the main hull will rise above the water surface. It features the supercavitation effect as its propulsion system and the pods carrying the complete vessel have propellers affixed at front. Their counter rotation comes from dual T53-703 turboshaft engines. These propellers create an air bubble through which the pods can move with 900 times less friction thus enabling it to cut through ten feet of waves during high-speed pursuits. The team is working to achieve the target speed of 50 knots but has only been able to manage 30 knots as of now!
What do you think of the Ghost? Do let us know!