Arlington, VA—AUV Fest 2007 will run from June 4–15 at the Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC) in Panama City, Florida. This event, sponsored by the Office of Naval Research (ONR) and NSWC, aims to introduce fleet sailors to autonomous underwater vehicles, or AUVs. ONR has sponsored AUV Fests about once every 18 months since 1997, and this will be the first time it will be hosted in Panama City.
About 400 participants are expected at AUV Fest 2007, including about 80 U.S. sailors and military personnel from Australia, Canada and New Zealand. Event director Phil Bernstein noted, “As far as we know, this is the largest such event ever conducted in the world."
By bringing the engineers who designed these unmanned systems together with potential users of these systems, the event organizers hope to stimulate discussion toward improving AUV operations and design. “Operating from the Joint Gulf Test Range will allow us to simultaneously demonstrate and characterize the performance of candidate systems,” said Bernstein.
Although most of the 80 or so vehicles at the AUV Fest will be underwater drones, the event will also feature air, surface, and ground systems. The two-week demonstration will feature 20 mature systems in a “tactical play." Less developed systems will be put through experiments to assess their performance. Several systems will interact in a common operating area to evaluate how well they work together.
June 13 has been designated as Media Day. Interested members of the media should report to the Naval Support Activity’s Visitor Reception Center at 12:45 PM, where they will be escorted to the technologies on display. Tours begin at 1:00 PM, and subject matter experts will be on hand to explain the technologies and answer questions.
To sign up for Media Day, contact Dan Broadstreet at (850) 235-5990, firstname.lastname@example.org, no later than June 12.