Ninjas have been usurped as the number one threat to pirates. The new "Ghost" high-speed attack vessel from Juliet Marine Systems is going to severely mess up some scallywags.
The Ghost is designed to move fast in coastal shallows, making it ideal for convoy escort missions and patrolling aquatic flash-points like the Straits of Hormuz. Juliet Marine "has been studying the problem of how to counter swarm attacks for several years" and built the Ghost with the speed, manoeuvrability and deadliness needed to combat the threat. While specific figures on the ship's top speed and range are currently unavailable, the Ghost will reportedly employ jet engines and supercavitating technology -- extruding veils of air bubbles to reduce drag. It can also lift itself out of the water on its pontoons in order to navigate extremely shallow areas just off-shore.
The Ghost will be no slouch in the weapon's department either. Juliet Marine recently announced that it is searching for a weapons integration company to fill the Ghost's concealed weapons bay -- located on the ship's underbelly -- with "a few thousand pounds" of pirate-killing power, everything from Gatling guns and Mark 48 torpedoes. The bay can also be converted into an additional fuel tank to extend the craft's range or used to refuel other ships at sea.
The bad news is that Ghost is still under development. The good news is that, once complete, it could be made available to private customers. Specifically, Juliet Marine is "discussing with the shipping industry the use of GHOST boats to provide private security patrols for their ships and insurance customers." [DVice, Danger Room, PR Newswire, Juliet Marine Systems]