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Government Regulations

There are some of the US regulations that apply to Autonomous Unverwater Vehicles.

DoD Directive 3000.09, November 21, 2012, Autonomy in Weapon Systems
SUBJECT: Autonomy in Weapon Systems

1. PURPOSE. This Directive:
a. Establishes DoD policy and assigns responsibilities for the development and use of autonomous and semi-autonomous functions in weapon systems, including manned and unmanned platforms.
b. Establishes guidelines designed to minimize the probability and consequences of failures in autonomous and semi-autonomous weapon systems that could lead to unintended engagements.

Regulating Defense Exports
The U.S. Government views the sale, export, and re-transfer of defense articles and defense services as an integral part of safeguarding U.S. national security and furthering U.S. foreign policy objectives. Authorizations to transfer defense articles and provide defense services, if applied judiciously, can help meet the legitimate needs of friendly countries, deter aggression, foster regional stability, and promote the peaceful resolution of disputes. The U.S., however, is cognizant of the potentially adverse consequences of indiscriminate arms transfers and, therefore, strictly regulates exports and re-exports of defense items and technologies to protect its national interests and those interests in peace and security of the broader international community.

DDTC – The Offices that Administer the Defense Export Regulations
The Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC), Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, in accordance with 22 U.S.C. 2778-2780 of the Arms Export Control Act (AECA) and the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) (22 CFR Parts 120-130), is charged with controlling the export and temporary import of defense articles and defense services covered by the United States Munitions List (USML). To learn more about DDTC, please visit its Web site (www.pmddtc.state.gov).

The pertainant seation of the US Munitions List that applies to Autonomous Underwater Vehicles:

Category XX- Submersible Vessels, Oceanographic and Associated Equipment

  • *(a) Submersible vessels manned or unmanned, tethered or untethered, designed or modified for military purposes, or powered by nuclear propulsion plants.
  • *(b) Swimmer delivery vehicles designed or modified for military purposes.
  •  (c) Equipment, components, parts, accessories, and attachments specifically designed or modified for any of the articles in paragraphs (a) or (b) of this category.
  •  (d) Technical data ( as defined in 12010 of this subchapter) and defense services (as defined in 120.9 of this subchapter) directly related to defense articles enumerated in paragraphs (a) through (c) of this category. (See 125.4 of this subchapter for exemptions.) Technical data directly related to the manufacture or production of any defense articles enumerated elsewhere in this Category that are designated as Significant Military Equipment (SME) shall itself be designated as SME. 

All manufacturers, exporters, and brokers of defense articles, defense services, or related technical data, as defined on the United States Munitions List (Part 121 of the ITAR) are required to register with DDTC.

Further Export Information

US Department of Transportation Final Rule on Transport of Lithium Batteries dated 5 Aug 2014