Navy asks SAIC for auto-electrical power source test and measurement equipment for MK 48 Mod 7 torpedo

Aug. 20, 2020
The MK 48 Mod 7 CBASS torpedo uses modern COTS technologies in an open-architecture computing environment, and can take hardware and software upgrades.

WASHINGTON – U.S. Navy undersea warfare experts are asking Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC) in Reston, Va., to provide test and measurement equipment and hardware for the U.S. Navy's Common Broadband Advanced Sonar System (CBASS) version of the MK 48 Mod 7 heavyweight torpedo.

Officials of the Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington announced a $84.8 million order to SAIC on Friday for option year four of the MK 48 Mod 7 heavyweight torpedo production program to supply all-up round torpedo equipment and support.

The CBASS broadband sonar makes the torpedo more effective against emerging submarine classes in harsh acoustic environments, say officials of the torpedo's designer, the Lockheed Martin Corp. Rotary and Mission Systems segment in Washington.

SAIC has been under Navy contract to provide 48 Mod 7 heavyweight torpedo afterbody and tailcone sections, production engineering and hardware support, as well as auto-electrical power source test sets. This order combines purchases for the Navy, Australia, and Taiwan.

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The MK 48 Mod 7 CBASS torpedo uses modern commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) technologies in an open-architecture computing environment, and can be improved with regular hardware and software upgrades.

The MK 48 Mod 7 torpedo is standard armament for the Navy's fleet of Los Angeles-, Virginia-, and Seawolf-class fast attack submarines, as well as Ohio-class ballistic-missile and cruise-missile submarines.

Lockheed Martin is building the MK 48 Mod 7 CBASS heavyweight torpedo with advanced common broadband advanced sonar system for expanded operational capabilities for shallow waters along coastlines and inside harbors, as well as in the deep-water open ocean.

In addition to Lockheed Martin and SAIC, Progeny Systems Corp. in Manassas, Va., also is involved in MK 48 Mod 7 CBASS torpedo production. Progeny Systems is upgrading subsystems on the torpedo.

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The CBASS torpedo also has the ability of multiband operation with active and passive homing; advanced counter-countermeasure capabilities; effectiveness against low-Doppler shallow submarines, fast deep diving submarines, and high-performance surface ships; autonomous fire-and-forget operation or wire-guide capability to enable post-launch monitoring and updates via the submarine combat system; and running Otto Fuel II as the propellant.

The MK 48 Mod 7 CBASS torpedo can transmit and receive over a wide frequency band and use broadband signal processing techniques to improve the torpedo’s search, acquisition, and attack, Lockheed Martin officials say.

The MK 48 torpedo is 19 feet long, 21 inches in diameter, and weighs 3,500 pounds. It can be used as deep as 1,200 feet at distances as far as five miles. The torpedo can travel at 28 knots and has a 650-pound high-explosive warhead.

On this order SAIC will do the work in Bedford and Indianapolis, Ind; Marion, Mass.; and Middletown, R.I., and should be finished by April 2023. For more information contact SAIC online at, or Naval Sea Systems Command at

About the Author

John Keller | Editor-in-Chief

John Keller is the Editor-in-Chief, Military & Aerospace Electronics Magazine--provides extensive coverage and analysis of enabling electronics and optoelectronic technologies in military, space and commercial aviation applications. John has been a member of the Military & Aerospace Electronics staff since 1989 and chief editor since 1995.

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