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U.S. Upgrades Submarine Detection System in Response to China’s Growing Navy and Threats

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U.S. Navy’s Upgraded Submarine Detection System in Response to Growing Chinese Naval Presence

The U.S. Navy is investing billions to upgrade its Cold War-era submarine detection system in the Pacific amid China’s naval expansion and heightened aggression, incorporating artificial intelligence and unmanned drones to enhance surveillance (Photo: 9news)

Modernizing the Submarine Detection System in Response to Growing Threats

According to, the U.S. Navy is investing billions of dollars in upgrading its Cold War-era submarine detection system in the Pacific Ocean as China strengthens its navy and displays increasing aggression.

The Integrated Undersea Surveillance System, initially developed in the 1950s to counter Russia’s naval capabilities during the Cold War, is undergoing modernization efforts, according to three individuals with direct knowledge of the project who spoke with Reuters. The goal of the modernization is to make submarine detection system surveillance cables smaller while expanding coverage.

Additionally, the plan involves the integration of artificial intelligence (AI) to analyze submarine detection system surveillance data quickly for anomalies and potential foreign submarines, a task that AI can perform much faster than human analysts. The updated hardware includes fleets of unmanned drones tasked with patrolling Pacific areas for submarine detection system activity. Ships can also carry portable sensors that serve as undersea satellites, deploy-able as needed.

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Unveiling the Contracts Behind the Submarine Detection System Program

To gain insight into this top-secret program, Reuters conducted interviews with over a dozen Navy personnel and contractors and reviewed hundreds of Navy contracts. This investigation revealed at least 30 contracts linked to the submarine detection system surveillance program, signed over the past three years with major defense companies and startups focusing on unmanned sea drones and AI processing.

As China escalates its aggressive stance toward Taiwan, vowing to reunify the island by force if necessary, the U.S. is fortifying its surveillance capabilities in the Pacific to monitor developments closely. The U.S. has maintained a “strategic ambiguity” policy regarding Taiwan’s status, which adds to the urgency of enhancing its submarine detection system.

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