Thursday, February 9, 2017

Unmanned warfare office eliminated in US Navy shuffle

Unmanned warfare office eliminated in US Navy shuffle: A U.S. Navy office set up less than two years ago to oversee the warfare development of unmanned systems has been eliminated, the Navy said Wednesday.

The Office of Unmanned Warfare Systems — coded N99 in the Navy’s system of identifying offices reporting directly to the chief of naval operations, collectively known as OPNAV — is being broken up and its functions distributed to other offices, Adm. Bill Moran, vice chief of naval operations, told service leaders in a Feb. 8 message.

The reorganization, said Lt. Jackie Pau, a Navy spokesperson at the Pentagon, “is the next step in the Navy's ongoing process to mainstream the complementary warfighting effects of manned and unmanned warfare systems.”

The move, Moran said in the message, was done “with the goal of creating a leaner, more agile organization.”

The N99 office was established in mid-2015 as part of an initiative by then-Navy Secretary Ray Mabus to place unmanned warfare on a par with other OPNAV warfare divisions.