At-Sea Sustainment

This work supports the Navy’s interest in advanced sea platform technology and sea-basing science and technology. At-sea sustainment focuses on the development of new technologies and systems to improve the capability of the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps to provide reliable, robust sustainment from the sea. Sustained systems include surface, subsurface and amphibious, manned and unmanned ships, craft and platforms while they are operating at sea and USMC units and systems operating ashore or in the littorals in contested environments.

Research Concentration Areas

Technologies, manned and unmanned, that will allow the safe and efficient: storage; selective offload; handling; surface, subsurface or amphibious transport and transfer; and delivery of payloads, materials, supplies, personnel and other required items at-sea without the need to return to port for benign sea conditions or to use port-based assets. Technologies may address: precision maneuvering at sea; at-sea mooring / coupling; at-sea transfer between ships / vessels; at-sea servicing of equipment/systems/payloads; decision support for at-sea logistics operations; advanced surface, subsurface and amphibious transport systems; advanced ship-to-shore transport / transfer systems; and other related challenges.

Research Challenges and Opportunities

  • Develop and demonstrate logistics system technologies to provide effective logistics support of widely distributed fleet assets / forces in contested environments
  • Develop state-of-the-art technologies to improve on current, forward-deployed, logistic practices currently in use by the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps — making them more efficient, safe and capable
  • Develop unmanned systems for the distribution of logistics — from the smallest part to largest vehicle — to remote / widely distributed operating units both at-sea and ashore
  • Explore the use of portable kits, unmanned systems, and modern day foraging to reduce the demand on fleet assets while pursing forward deployed logistics
  • Reduce the Navy’s dependence on large surface vessels or ports for re-supply and re-arming

UPDATED: November 2020

Program Contact Information

Name: Dr. Paul Hess

Title: Program Officer

Department: Code 331

Email for Questions:

How to Submit

For detailed application and submission information for this research topic, please see our Funding Opportunities page and refer to broad agency announcement (BAA) No. N00014-21-S-B001.

  • Contracts: All white papers and full proposals for contracts must be submitted through FedConnect; instructions are included in the BAA.
  • Grants: All white papers for grants must be submitted through FedConnect, and full proposals for grants must be submitted through; instructions are included in the BAA.

* Some pages on this website provide links which require a plug in to view.