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    NUWC Division Newport test range capabilities highlighted during virtual open house

    NUWC Division Newport test range capabilities highlighted during virtual open house

    Photo By David Stoehr | Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Newport employees tour the Narragansett Bay...... read more read more



    Story by Public Affairs Office 

    Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Newport

    NEWPORT, R.I. — Three of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Newport’s test ranges — the Narragansett Bay Test Facility (NBTF) in Rhode Island, the Dodge Pond Acoustic Measurement Test Facility in Connecticut, and the Seneca Lake Sonar Test Facility in New York — were featured as part of an open house held on March 11.

    Ryan Beatley, head of Division Newport’s Engineering, Operations and Analysis Branch, hosted the presentation that focused on the “Three As” of each facility — affordability, accessibility and availability.

    “With new employees on board and new capabilities at the ranges, it was time to remind everyone of what we can do for them,” Beatley said. “We’d also like to connect with test teams and find out what their needs are so we can help them achieve their goals.

    “The ‘Three As’ are what I want people to know about us when it comes to testing,” Beatley said. “We’ve got the NBTF right down the street, and for more specific types of testing we’ve got Dodge Pond and Seneca Lake, depending on what you’re doing. All three facilities are affordable and have experienced teams to help with test events.”

    For example, last summer, the multi-department team supporting an Argus waterside security exercise used a variety of NBTF services to successfully complete their mission of gathering tracking data for unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs). The Argus team used range craft and Engineering and Diving Support Unit (EDSU) divers to deploy and place sensors, REEF workspace to collect data, CONEX boxes on the pier to monitor their command and control system, and NBTF staff for weight handling expertise.

    The three test ranges are all service cost centers, which means test teams pay for range time and services. It also means that the more the ranges are used, the lower the rates become. After a market analysis, Division Newport’s Ranges, Engineering and Analysis Department structured their rates so they are comparable with industry but with the added benefits of no contracts and a fair cancellation policy.

    Division Newport test teams can bring in partners from industry and academia to collaborate at the three ranges using the trusted traveler process. Teams can work with Division Newport’s Security Division to get their visitors on board all three ranges.

    To help procure additional services, Taylor Velasco, the Contracting Office Representative for the ranges, introduced the Oceans Testing contract. This competitive contract with three vendors can secure assets and specialty equipment for testing both locally and globally. Velasco will assist test teams with a rapid contract award: 60 days for contracts less than $250,000 and 90 days for contracts more than $250,000. Currently, this contract vehicle is only open to Division Newport departments but will soon branch out to support other warfare centers and organizations.

    The open house featured a dedicated chat room so viewers could participate in a question and answer session. Employees who attended the event in person had the opportunity to tour the NBTF following the presentation.

    Information on the three ranges is posted below and at Contact emails are available on each site link.

    Narragansett Bay Test Facility

    The Narragansett Bay Test Facility (NBTF), located less than a mile from Division Newport’s main campus, provides in-water test range support for the research and development, and engineering and analysis of underwater, surface and aerial vehicles and related technologies in a realistic, operational environment. Typical NBTF tests include unmanned underwater vehicles, launchers, acoustic sensor development, electronic warfare system development, and unmanned aerial vehicles. The site of the Advanced Naval Technology Exercise from 2015-19, the NBTF can accommodate numerous types of in-testing simultaneously with its inner and outer ranges. The facility has both unclassified and classified work spaces, range craft and other support equipment. NBTF staff can also assist test teams in setting up in-water testing all along the East Coast, from Florida to the Gulf of Maine.

    The EDSU and a Torpedo Recovery Team support in-water testing to assist with testing, deployment and recovery of vehicles and equipment. The NBTF staff can also assist with all required safety, environmental, and network approvals. While test teams are ultimately responsible for obtaining their approvals, they are encouraged to use the staff’s experience with these processes.

    Dodge Pond Acoustic Measurement Test Facility

    Located in Niantic, Connecticut, the Dodge Pond Acoustic Measurement Facility is one of the Navy’s open-water acoustic test and evaluation sites for testing of all types of transducers, arrays, domes, baffles, towed line arrays, and other underwater electro-acoustic devices. It is uniquely quiet with an ambient noise less than sea state zero and features a fully instrumented, moored barge with lift capability for lowering equipment into the pond and ability to measure myriad parameters. Routine measurements of transducers parameters can be made over the frequency range of 50 Hz to 500 kHz. Testing requirements below 50 Hz and above 500 kHz can be accommodated depending on the physical and acoustic limitations imposed by the transducer size and test distance.

    Seneca Lake Sonar Test Facility

    Located in Dresden, New York, Seneca Lake Sonar Test Facility is the deepest freshwater lake east of the Mississippi River with water depths to 600 feet. The test facility can accommodate underwater testing of active and passive acoustic devices from a single element to a full sonar system as well as UUVs, launchers and a myriad of other tests. Seneca Lake is home to the Systems Measurement Platform, a stable moored platform with two test wells. This remote calibration platform features three test stations, movable to a range of depths/distances. The facility has heavy lift capabilities, a fleet of boats, experienced crew, and high-voltage capabilities. Seneca Lake is isothermal from December to June, and isothermal below 200 feet for the remaining period of the year and has low ambient background noise conditions 12 months a year.

    The facility can measure all acoustic parameters for acoustic equipment from single element transducers to massive and complex arrays. It is capable of online data reduction allowing for statistical and spectrum analysis and provides graphic and tabular output suitable for technical reports. The data acquisition system is designed so that it can be altered quickly to meet testing requirements. It has a bandwidth from DC to 500 kHz. It can also be configured as a pure digitizer. It can generate and receive acoustic pulses, continuous wave, or noise signals. There are three integrated and compatible test systems permit the use of distant platform separations for acoustic experiment and testing.

    “I encourage all the TPMs [technical program managers] and PIs [principal investigators] to get in touch with us as they plan their in-water testing. We’re here to help. We want to learn about what you’re doing so we can all figure out the best plan to help you be successful,” said Beatley.

    NUWC Division Newport is a shore command of the U.S. Navy within the Naval Sea Systems Command, which engineers, builds and supports America’s fleet of ships and combat systems. NUWC Newport provides research, development, test and evaluation, engineering and fleet support for submarines, autonomous underwater systems, undersea offensive and defensive weapons systems, and countermeasures associated with undersea warfare.

    NUWC Newport is the oldest warfare center in the country, tracing its heritage to the Naval Torpedo Station established on Goat Island in Newport Harbor in 1869. Commanded by Capt. Chad Hennings, NUWC Newport maintains major detachments in West Palm Beach, Florida, and Andros Island in the Bahamas, as well as test facilities at Seneca Lake and Fisher's Island, New York, Leesburg, Florida, and Dodge Pond, Connecticut.



    Date Taken: 03.22.2021
    Date Posted: 03.22.2021 15:43
    Story ID: 391995
    Location: NEWPORT, RI, US 

    Web Views: 226
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