Coastal Trident is an operational research program conducted to advance the state of the art in countering threats to port and maritime security and sustaining the global operations of naval forces. It is planned and conducted by the Naval Surface Warfare Center’s Port Hueneme Division, in partnership with Matter Labs, Economic Development Collaborative-Ventura County, the Port of Hueneme, and serves stakeholders in military, homeland security, and emergency response capabilities in the port and maritime domains.


Coastal Trident is conducted on an annual basis to advance capabilities that address asymmetric threats to naval operations, port and maritime commerce, critical infrastructure, and national security.


The following goals have been established to support operational research conducted under the Coastal Trident program:

  • Reinforce federal, state, local government, and private sector strategic partnerships in the port and maritime domains

  • Strengthen existing security and emergency response capabilities and CONOPS to support safe and effective port and maritime operations

  • Explore concepts of employment and accelerate implementation of developing and transitional technologies to address gaps in port and maritime security capabilities

  • Identify planning, acquisition, training, and exercise priorities related to preparedness against asymmetric threats and all hazards in the port and maritime domains

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ANTX-Coastal Trident

Coastal Trident 2021 (CT-21) will be conducted to examine the operational and technical capabilities of port and maritime security organizations to counter asymmetric threats to the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Marine Transportation System, and associated personnel, operations, and critical infrastructure.


The program will be a combination of scenario-based technical demonstrations, field experiments, and discussion- and operations-based exercises. These activities will be conducted in the summer of 2021 and are intended to promote innovation, collaboration, and accelerate development and implementation of capabilities to meet operational needs in the port and maritime domains.


CT-21 will feature alignment with several complementary technology and exercise initiatives, emphasizing the importance of a “whole of society” strategy for achieving port and maritime security, maximizing the resources available to support program activities, and limiting “exercise fatigue” resulting from competing training and operations priorities.


Alignment with the Advanced Naval Technology Exercise

ANTX was initiated in 2015 by the Naval Undersea Warfare Center’s (NUWC) Newport Division as a field experimentation resource for the Navy’s research and development (R&D) and science and technology (S&T) communities. ANTX is designed to provide a low-risk environment in which technologies can be evaluated for their abilities to address near-term technical priorities for the naval warfighter.


In 2021, NSWC PHD’s ANTX will be conducted within the architecture of Coastal Trident, in order to focus the technical capabilities and subject matter expertise of government, industry, and academic participants on Navy priorities and technical needs. CT-21 will be leveraged as a venue to support high-velocity learning and accelerate development, evaluation, and implementation of technologies to assist Navy forces in the following areas:

  • In-service engineering, maintenance, and supportability

  • Sensor data fusion, maritime communications, and decision support

  • Multi-spectral sensing, augmented (AR) and virtual reality (VR), and digital engineering

  • Unmanned systems (UxS) applications and countermeasures


ANTX activities conducted during Coastal Trident facilitate technical demonstrations and field experiments designed to “expand the advantage” of the naval warfighter through technical exchange, collaboration, and innovation. In order to maximize the benefit to the warfighter, these projects are focused on identified gaps and urgent operational needs.


Alignment with Regional Training and Exercise Initiatives

Scenario-based training and exercise activities are critical enablers for development of proficiency in mission tasks and for validation of pre-planned responses, regional concepts of operation (CONOPS), and joint or combined interoperability. These activities also facilitate a controlled learning environment, in which novel technology applications and concepts of employment (CONEMP) can be evaluated without operational risk.


In 2021, several regional training and exercise priorities leverage the learning environments establish by Coastal Trident, in order to expand awareness of regional operational and technical capabilities, create opportunities for engagement between practitioners and subject matters experts (SMEs), limit exercise fatigue and leverage unique supporting resources, and maximize the benefit within port and maritime security communities of practice and the greater body of knowledge.


CT-21 activities will incorporate the following activities, requested by operational stakeholders:

  • Exercise of CBRN detection and incident response capabilities

  • Exercise of underwater search and salvage capabilities

  • Exercise of cyber consequence management plans and supporting capabilities


Alignment with Regional Technical Innovation Initiatives

One of the recurring goals for the Coastal Trident program is to develop the capabilities of response organizations to operate in the port and maritime domains. This focus is due, in large part, to the nature of these environments that makes operations inherently challenging. Technology is an enabler in the port and maritime domains – a force multiplier and critical factor in overcoming the physical and physiological limitations, large geographic distances, and austerity of resources that limit the ability of personnel to operate safely, effectively, and with persistence.


CT-21 activities will support the efforts of the NavalX “FATHOMWERX” Ventura Tech Bridge, the Port of Hueneme’s Maritime Advanced Systems Laboratory (MAST), and Economic Development Collaborative-Ventura County (EDC-VC) to promote engagement, education, experimentation, and assessment. These activities will be designed to connect operational stakeholders with technical SMEs to advance technology capable of filling operational gaps.


For more information, please request access to the CT-21 documentation portal and the Coastal Trident Archives.

Planning and Execution Milestones

The following schedule has been established for planning and execution of CT-21 activities.


Planning Phase

Concept Development Meeting        November 18, 2020

Project Proposals Due                     January 13, 2021

Initial Planning Meeting                    January 20, 2021

Mid-term Planning Meeting              March 17, 2021

Final Planning Meeting                     May 5, 2021


Execution Phase

Program Execution                           June-August 2021

Technology Open House                  July 27-29, 2021

How Do I Get Involved?

Coastal Trident activities are determined by program sponsors and participants, based on their communicated research objectives, ad operational or technical gaps.


Organizations interested in proposing projects for CT-21 should complete and submit a proposal, according to the process outlined in the CT-21 Request for Project Information.

CT-21 Request for Project Information_Pa

Click here to download the CT-21 Request for Project Information

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Click here to download the CT-21 Project Proposal form

Points of Contact

Brendan Applegate, Principal Investigator

NSWC Port Hueneme


Alan Jaeger, Ventura Tech Bridge Director

NSWC Port Hueneme


Bryan Went, External Engagement Partner

Matter Labs

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