Maritime Military: A Short Story about Sextants, Pirates and Global Collaboration

Greatly incentivized to explore Earth’s boundaries, human curiosity catered to no limit. But a compass can only guide you so far, especially if you think about maritime military operations. In the past, the limitations of manual navigation tools constrained more complex maritime operations, making it challenging to ensure success for every mission. The unpredictable nature of the ocean demands precision; that’s why marine engineering and the integration of embedded software are at their peak nowadays.

Before this transformation, before the advent of technology, the ocean was the biggest element of unpredictability in maritime operations. In the maritime military, the lack of precision posed an even more substantial challenge. More intricate missions encountered limitations, turning success into a formidable challenge. This challenge became a story of evolution and might be a great exploration of technology and human determination.

The Age of Exploration

Like most things, the emergence of maritime military forces traces back to ancient civilizations. The sea was another way to threaten and be threatened. What made and sustained empires was the ability to control bodies of water for trade, defense, and expansion. The Greeks, Romans, and Egyptians had naval forces to protect their coastlines and trade routes.

Centuries ago, sailors and maritime military forces relied on manual navigation tools. With no Global Positioning System (GPS) in sight, sailors had to determine their global position by observing the sky. Using a sextant, they measured the angular distance of a start from the horizon to navigate. The maritime military story grew in the Age of Exploration when captains set sail to discover new routes for trading. European powers such as Spain and Portugal, and later the United States, established their maritime force using a blend of strategy and evolving naval technologies.

While the number of transported goods from other countries rose, so did the need to protect said treasures from the threat of piracy. Piracy threatened commerce and created disputes in diplomatic relations between nations, leading to the realization that dedicated naval forces were necessary.

Maritime Military in the World Wars

The 20th Century marked a complex new age for maritime military forces with the start of the World Wars. Naval power became a decisive factor in global conflicts.

The U.S. Navy’s Pacific Fleet, exemplified by aircraft carriers like the USS Enterprise, showcased a new era. The Arctic convoys of World War II highlighted the challenges faced by maritime forces in extreme conditions. As the Cold War unfolded, naval tensions simmered, with the U.S. and Soviet Union showcasing their maritime power through technological innovation. The latter half of the 20th Century saw a paradigm shift with the integration of computers and the emergence of digital command centers.

Charting the New Course for the Maritime Military

In the contemporary era, maritime military forces started leveraging advanced technologies for precision and efficiency. Multifunctional displays have become integral to naval vessels, offering a centralized platform for radar, sonar, communication devices, and more. Maritime military forces are not only embracing technological advancements but also collaborating on a global scale. NATO fleets, multinational exercises, and joint operations showcase a concerted effort towards maintaining maritime security.

Collaborative efforts, such as the European Union Naval Force’s anti-piracy missions off the coast of Somalia, underscore the importance of technological advances in helping to protect vulnerable shipments. Operation Atalanta aims to combat and ultimately eliminate piracy through a multi-faceted approach. The ever-expanding technological horizon includes unmanned underwater vehicles and satellite-based surveillance, showcasing the relentless march of innovation.

AROBS Engineering's Marine Solutions

We have over 15 years of expertise in marine engineering and embedded software. We’ve partnered with top global players in the marine industry, developing software for marine electronics. Our specialization in marine applications, including multifunctional displays and advanced navigation systems, aligns with the evolving needs of maritime military forces. Our commitment to excellence extends seamlessly into the maritime military industry, ensuring precision, collaboration, and efficiency on the open seas.

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