The M-80 Stiletto is a prototype naval ship, manufactured by the M-Ship Company, that may go into service with the United States Navy SEALs within a short time frame. It has a top speed of over 50 knots and a range of 750 nautical miles, and is powered by four 1,650 hp engines manufactured by the Caterpillar Company. Weighing only 45 tons unloaded, the vessel is light enough that it can be hoisted onto a cargo ship, while still able to carry up to 20 tons of cargo in the 2,000 square feet of usable interior space. The ship is 88.6 feet in length, with a width of 40 feet and a height of 18.5 feet, yet has a draft of only 2.5 feet.
Even though it has a quite shallow draft, the ship is exceptionally stable on rough seas, due to its wide body. This allows the Stiletto to operate both out at sea, and in shallow water. Its unique Double-M hull channels air underneath the hull, lifting it out of the water, thereby reducing friction and increasing speed while maintaining a shallow draft. Additionally, the ship's hull is faceted in order to deflect radar.
One key feature of this boat is that it can set up a network between the boat and a special forces team by launching an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that would relay information between the team and boat. The Stiletto will also carry surveillance UAVs to provide reconnaissance for the SEAL team, and using a clustered supercomputer on board, will be able to send a real-time image to the team on shore.
The boat is made almost entirely of carbon-fiber, with a base cost of $6,000,000 for a boat, while a fully-equpped boat will be $10,000,000.
By Pdunn @ 2006-09-14 21:50:17