> our title:

ONR Completes Unmanned Systems Demo

> original title:

Navy Reservists Support ONR Unmanned Systems Demo

(Source: Naval Air Systems Command; issued June 28, 2011)

PANAMA CITY, Fla --- Forty-four Navy reservists supported a future naval capabilities demonstration held at Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division (NSWC PCD) June 13–23.

Sailors from across the U.S. provided support ranging from security to technical assistance during the 2011 Office of Naval Research (ONR) Mine Countermeasures (MCM) Science and Technology (S&T) Demonstration.

"Our main mission was to escort foreign nationals, but we also provided project support. A lot of our Sailors took advantage of the projects they were doing in Research and Development (R&D) and a few actually had the opportunity to drive the remote-operated vehicles (ROV)," said Master Chief Hull Technician Jeffrey Edens. "The idea of coming to Panama City was something that was really great and seeing the R&D side of the house, something we typically don't get to see, was a bonus for us. I've done a lot of annual training [sessions] and this is ranking as one of the best."

According to Fire Controlman First Class Dan Nicholson, the reservists played a crucial role in the physical aspect of the demo as well as fiscally.

"The biggest impact is the cost saving for ONR, because they didn't have to fund it. The Navy is supporting R and D [funding] through a different avenue," said Nicholson. "By using reservists, they are able to help save ONR $350,000 in personnel costs."

"The demo has been a great success, and I believe the Selective Reserve (SELRES) community played a big role in that success," said Edens. "SELRES was able to have personnel available at short notice. When the project leaders needed personnel, they were there within a phone call. I'm very proud of all the Sailors; they've done a great job."

In addition to a successful demo, the reservists were incredibly satisfied with the NSWC PCD staff.

"Knowing what they are doing at NSWC PCD, no matter what service you are in, is awesome," said Edens. "The civilian staff here has been outstanding; they've supported us as much as we've supported them. It's been a good two weeks and I hope I'm fortunate enough to get to do it again."

"Everyone on base has accepted us; they don't look at us as reservist," said Nicholson. "Although many of the community here are doctors and scientists, they still have treated us as equals. They don't look down on us as reservists and it's made our two weeks here very comfortable."