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23 mars 2015 1 23 /03 /mars /2015 17:20
Metal Shark's 7m rigid hull inflatable boats (RHIBs). Photo Gravois Aluminium Boats LLC DBA Metal Shark

Metal Shark's 7m rigid hull inflatable boats (RHIBs). Photo Gravois Aluminium Boats LLC DBA Metal Shark

Metal Shark's 7m rigid hull inflatable boats (RHIBs). Photo Gravois Aluminium Boats LLC DBA Metal Shark

 

18 March 2015 naval-technology.com

 

The US Navy has contracted Louisiana-based shipbuilder Metal Shark to build rigid hull inflatable boats (RHIBs), as part of future foreign military sales (FMS) requirements.

 

The $15.3m contract includes options that, if exercised, will bring the total value of the award to $47.4m.

 

Metal Shark president Chris Allard said: "Metal Shark is proud to count the US Navy among its top customers, and with the award of this newest contract, we look forward to continuing and strengthening this relationship for years to come.

 

"Large orders such as this one benefit Metal Shark customers large and small by way of increased production efficiencies and economies of scale that keep our pricing competitive, our workforce stable, and our technology on the leading edge."

 

Metal Shark's new 7m-long RHIBs will be constructed using a flexible baseline configuration to enable quick alterations, which will support specific FMS case requirements of customers across the globe.

 

The boats will be used to support a variety of operations, including personnel and cargo transfer, search and rescue, vessel interdiction and boarding, plus insertion and extraction of force, and open water patrol.

 

The company is also under contract to deliver the US navy's Force Protection Boat - Medium (FPB-M and High Speed Manoeuvrable Surface Target Boat (HSMST), as well as the US Coast Guard's Response Boat - Small (RBS).

 

Metal Shark also produces vessels for state and local law enforcement agencies, pilot associations, port operators, and several other commercial interests.

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23 mars 2015 1 23 /03 /mars /2015 17:20
USS John P Murtha (LPD 26) Photo Huntington Ingalls Industries

USS John P Murtha (LPD 26) Photo Huntington Ingalls Industries

 

20 March 2015 naval-technology.com

 

The US Navy is set to christen the tenth San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship on 21 March at the Huntington Ingalls Industries' (HII) shipbuilding division visitor control centre.

 

The ship is being named in honour of late John P Murtha, who represented Pennsylvania's twelfth congressional district from 1974 to 2010.

 

Having served in the Marine Corps for 37 years, Murtha saw service in the Korean War and in Vietnam, and earned the Bronze Star with Valor device, two Purple Hearts and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry.

 

Launched on 30 October 2014, the LPD 26 is scheduled for delivery to the navy in 2016 and will join the first nine ships of the San Antonio-class.

 

USS Portland (LPD 27), the final ship of the current San Antonio-class, was keel laid in August 2013 and is currently under construction at HII.

 

Designed to serve as a key element of the navy's sea base transformation, the LPDs are being developed to enable deployment of the combat and support elements of marine expeditionary units and brigades.

 

Featuring a flight deck and hangar which can operate CH-46 Sea Knight helicopters and the Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft (MV-22), the LPD 26 will be equipped with a well deck capable of embarking and debarking landing crafts, air cushion, the Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle (EFV), to deliver marines ashore.

 

The 684ft-long San Antonio-class ships have a displacement capacity of 25,000t and more than 23,000ft2 of vehicle storage, capable of transporting a landing force of up to 800 marines and their equipment.

 

The 11 ships will functionally replace more than 41 ships across four classes, providing the navy and marine corps with modern, sea-based platforms.

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23 mars 2015 1 23 /03 /mars /2015 17:20
USS Curtis Wilbur (DDG-54). Photo  US Navy, chief photographer's Mate Mahlon K Miller.

USS Curtis Wilbur (DDG-54). Photo US Navy, chief photographer's Mate Mahlon K Miller.

 

19 March 2015 naval-technology.com

 

The US Navy's Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Curtis Wilbur (DDG 54) has completed sea trials following a DDG midlife overhaul extended dry dock shipboard repair availability (EDSRA).

 

The 335-day EDSRA is said to be the longest and most extensive DDG overhaul in the history of Forward Deployed Naval Forces (FDNF).

 

The US Naval Ship Repair Facility in Yokosuka, Japan, conducted and led the first ever availability of DDG EDSRA to upgrade the destroyer's systems and weapons, as well as perform other necessary repairs.

 

USS Curtis Wilbur combat systems officer fire controlman 1st class Deffey Moore said: "It is incredibly important right now for the junior sailors to work with senior personnel to learn not just about their new equipment but underway life in general."

 

Built by Bath Iron Works in Bath, Maine, USS Curtis Wilbur is the fourth of seven Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyers assigned to Destroyer Squadron 15. Curtis was commissioned in Long Beach, California, on 19 March 1994.

 

The destroyer is permanently forward-deployed to Yokosuka in Japan where it supports the security and stability of the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.

 

Curtis Wilbur commanding officer, commander Hans De For said: "Curtis Wilbur worked with all of the ships on the waterfront to get our Sailors underway during the avail.

 

"With their help we were able to successfully complete this yard period with enough qualified watch standers to excel during sea trials."

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23 mars 2015 1 23 /03 /mars /2015 17:20
Northrop Grumman Names Alan Lytle Vice President, Undersea Systems

 

ANNAPOLIS, Md. – March 20, 2015 – Northrop Grumman Corporation

 

Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has named Alan Lytle vice president, Undersea Systems business unit, for the company's Electronic Systems sector, effective immediately.

 

In his new position, Lytle will have executive responsibility for all Undersea Systems programs and products involving the design, development and production of advanced undersea capabilities including submarine sensors, unmanned maritime systems, minehunting systems and torpedoes. He will be based at the company's facility in Annapolis.

 

Lytle joined the company in 2010 as director, Undersea Systems special defense programs. In 2013, he assumed the role of director, business development and strategy, focusing on emerging and growth markets in the undersea domain.

 

Prior to joining Northrop Grumman, Lytle was a principal investigator and program manager at the National Institute of Standards and Technology. His primary research areas were field robotics and 3D imaging systems. Lytle is also a U.S. Navy submarine officer and served on fast attack submarines before transitioning to the Navy Reserve. He currently holds the rank of captain.

 

Lytle earned bachelor's, master's and doctorate degrees in engineering from Virginia Tech. He is also a graduate of the Naval Command and Staff program at the Naval War College.

 

Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in unmanned systems, cyber, C4ISR, and logistics and modernization to government and commercial customers worldwide. Please visit www.northropgrumman.com for more information.

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23 mars 2015 1 23 /03 /mars /2015 08:35
Soryu class submarines (photo kure-news)

Soryu class submarines (photo kure-news)


18 March 2015 by Aurelia George Mulgan, Professor at the University of New South Wales, Canberra.- Pacific Sentinel
 

In July 2014, the Abe government adopted the ‘Three Principles on Transfer of Defense Equipment and Technology’, which approved Japanese weapons exports as long as certain conditions are met.

 

Based on this new, less restrictive policy on weapons exports Japan has concluded two major deals. The first is to supply surface-to-air missile parts to the US and the second to conduct joint research on air-to-air missiles with the United Kingdom. The proposed Australian submarine deal would eclipse both of these in terms of scale and significance.

 

Japan is yet to respond to the Australian government’s announcement that there would be a ‘competitive evaluation process’ to build Australia’s next submarine. But the Japanese Minister for Defense, Gen Nakatani, expressed a wish to hold talks with the Australian government regarding the matter. The Japanese government now understands that the submarine procurement issue is intertwined with Australia’s domestic politics and ‘is keeping a close eye on Abbott’.

 

Despite critical commentary in the Japanese press on the Australian government’s policy backflip, speculation continues that Japan’s Soryu-class submarines are the most likely candidate to replace Australia’s ageing Collins-class submarines. The expectation is that cooperation with Japan will continue because Australian companies are ‘incapable of building submarines on their own’.

 

In early January 2015, the Japanese press reported that the Ministry of Defense (MOD) had proposed joint development and production of the submarine with Australia. Instead of exporting a completed Soryu-class submarine, the proposal suggested joint development of new technology for material that absorbs sound waves and special steel that would be used to manufacture the hull.

 

Japan would be in charge of producing the main parts of the hull and assembling the submarines, while Australia would be in charge of producing some of the parts as well as the final building and maintenance. A Japanese MOD official noted that assembling the submarines in Australia would lead to higher costs and might affect the quality and safety of the product.

 

Other reports point to Japanese caution about completely handing over its submarine technology to Australia. Submarines are categorised as the ‘most sensitive of all sensitive information’. For this reason the Japanese military, and especially the Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF) whose cooperation will be essential if the deal goes ahead, has major reservations about the deal. MSDF officers ‘don’t tell colleagues, let alone family members, where a submarine is headed after it leaves port’. Japan and the US, which share some information gathered by submarines, do not share the location or ability of each submarine.

 

But the Abe government judged that sharing Japan’s submarine technology with Australia would lead to a strengthening of the production capacity of Japan’s domestic enterprises. The fact that Prime Minister Abe decided to examine the provision of Soryu-class submarine technology to Australia despite opposition from the MOD was regarded as proof that he considers Australia to be a ‘quasi-ally’.

 

The Abe administration is gradually putting in place the necessary policy, institutional and financial support framework to enable Japan’s defence industries to become significant players in the international weapons and defence technology market. In 2015, the Japanese government will launch a Defence Equipment Agency in the MOD. The new agency will have centralised control over defence equipment development, acquisition and exports. It will lead the expansion of weapons exports and is part of the so-called ‘Abe line’ that links the development of defence enterprises with the government’s growth strategy.

 

The MOD’s 2014 Strategy on Defense Production and Technological Bases includes financial assistance for the overseas expansion of defence enterprises and funding to research institutions that work on developing technology that can be used in weapons and equipment. A new executive panel for promoting weapons exports and joint development was also appointed to the MOD in December 2014. It will help the ministry to respond to the many requests for a framework to support the private enterprises involved and establish a system to determine the needs and technological standards of partner countries.

 

While the government has given the green light to weapons sales, companies that manufacture defence equipment are more mindful of the difficult practicalities of particular deals and the need to gain real profits. Some have strong reservations about the Australian submarine deal. An executive of Kawasaki Heavy Industries remarked ‘there is no way Australia will be able to look after the submarines properly even if we give it to them’. But at this stage it is ‘almost impossible’ for a private company to become even partially involved in the operations of the Australian Navy.

 

If the agreement goes ahead this deal could signal an inseparable security relationship between Australia, Japan and the US with both Japan and the US supplying their relevant technology to Australia and cooperating in Australia’s submarine development.

 

For Prime Minister Abe, weapons exports are a key element in a broader strategy of building a network of ‘quasi-alliances’, which includes Australia, India and Southeast Asian countries, with the Japan–US alliance maintained as the strategic ‘trump card’.

 
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22 mars 2015 7 22 /03 /mars /2015 16:40
Mistral, Delayed Submarine Projects May Cause Euro 300 Million loss to DCNS - photo F. Dubray

Mistral, Delayed Submarine Projects May Cause Euro 300 Million loss to DCNS - photo F. Dubray

 

March 17, 2015 defenseworld.net

 

The French Mistral helicopter carrier Vladivostok could be relocated from Saint-Nazaire to Brest Naval base due to high maintenance costs, Local media reported.

 

DCNS and STX shipyard operators are subject to port and maintenance fees of about $2.7 million. It is rumored that the companies might think of relocating the aircraft carrier to join the naval base in Brest, Le Telegramme reported Monday.

 

Controversy erupted with non delivery of the Mistral ships to Russia after US and allied European countries imposed sanctions against Moscow in regard to Ukraine conflicts. France was to deliver the ship in November last year.

 

General Director of Russian state-run arms exporter Rosoboronexport Anatoly Isaykin had announced in January that Moscow will make a final decision on the non-delivery of Mistral ships by May.

 

If the Mistral ships are not delivered, Paris is obliged to return money Moscow paid, Isaykin had said.

 

Non delivery of the Mistral amphibious assault ship to Russia and delays in the Scorpene and Barracuda submarine projects to different customers has weighed down on the financials of DCNS.

 

In addition, a delay in the civil nuclear program of France has affected revenues of DNCS. The loss of DNCS is also expected to affect the financials of Thales which owns 35 percent of DCNS.

 

However, its performance may improve in 2015 due to a recent contract with Egypt to supply warships and another with Saudi Arabia for patrol vessels.

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22 mars 2015 7 22 /03 /mars /2015 12:50
A26 submarine - credits : Saab-Kockums

A26 submarine - credits : Saab-Kockums

 

March 20, 2015 By Gerard O'Dwyer – Defense News

 

HELSINKI — The Swedish government's approval of $700 million in new funding to bolster naval capacity forms part of a wide-ranging capital investment plan to significantly advance the military's surface warship presence in the Baltic Sea and submarine hunting capabilities.

The special funding is intended to be used by the Navy for core investment programs in 2016-2020.

In its funding proposal, the Armed Forces Command (AFC), envisaged a more expansive naval-strengthening plan costing up to $2 billion. The government's response has been to announce the purchase of two new A26-class submarines. The capital budget earmarked for the A26-class submarine acquisition amounts to $950 million.

Saab-Kockums, which signed in June 2014 a letter of intent covering the A26's design and development, is expected to secure the contract and deliver the two submarines by 2022.

 

Read more

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22 mars 2015 7 22 /03 /mars /2015 08:40
Russia's New 4th Generation Lada Submarine To Nullify USA's Naval Power


March 20, 2015 by asian-defence.net
 

The new Russian submarine, Lada, will end the era of USA's reign at sea. Washington will lose the main instrument of "power projection" to remote regions and may finally lose its global geopolitical role as well.

Anti-Russian militaristic hysteria has been snowballing in the West lately. Having noticed the revival of the traditionalist, imperial Russia that the deceitful Western Sodom has been humiliating and insulting for decades, the "free" European and American media filled their reports and pages with alarmist headlines about Moscow's "military preparations."

Should the Russians launch a rocket from the Plesetsk cosmodrome or from a submarine in the Barents Sea, or send its strategic aircraft flying along European borders, countless Western publications explode in accusations of "militarism and imperialism," "nuclear weapons rattling" "intimidation of the international community," and so on and so forth. Meanwhile, important news reports that are directly related to a change in the military-strategic balance of power in Eurasia, often pass unnoticed.

 

The message did not receive any attention of the general public. Even military observers paid no proper attention to it. Yet, the news marked a real revolution in the field of military submarine making.For example, on October 13, 2014, RIA Novosti news agency reported, citing a source at the military-industrial complex of the Russian Federation that Russia decided to launch serial production of air-independent propulsion power plants that would be used for future Project 677 "Lada" submarines."

 

Advantages and disadvantages of underwater hunters

 

Today, all submarines are divided into two groups by the type of power plants: submarines with a nuclear power plant (nuclear reactor) and diesel-electric submarines that move on the surface with the help of a diesel engine, and use battery-powered electric motors when navigating under the water. 

Nuclear submarines appeared in the Soviet Navy in the late 1950s. The first nuclear submarine of Project 627 called the Leninsky Komsomol was put into operation in 1957. Since then and to this day, nuclear submarines constitute the main striking force of the Russian navy. They carry a wide range of most formidable weapons in the world - from strategic intercontinental missiles and tactical nuclear torpedoes to high-precision long-range cruise missiles - the core of the Russian strategic forces of non-nuclear deterrence.

 

Nuclear submarines possess a number of outstanding advantages. A nuclear sub can stay under the water for a practically unlimited period of time; it has high underwater speed, impressive submersion depth and an ability to carry a huge number of various weapons and equipment. Modern large displacement nuclear subs can be equipped not only with weapons, but also with highly efficient sonars, systems of communications, electronic reconnaissance and navigation.

At the same time, the main advantage of a nuclear power plant - its power - is the source of the main drawback of nuclear submarines. This drawback is noisiness. The presence of a nuclear reactor (and sometimes two) on board the submarine along with a whole range of other systems and mechanisms (turbines, generators, pumps, refrigeration units, fans, etc.) inevitably produces a variety of frequency oscillations and vibrations. Therefore, a nuclear submarine requires sophisticated technology to reduce the noise level.

 

Yet, a diesel-electric submarine is almost silent under water. Battery-powered electric motors do not require turbines and other noisy equipment. However, a diesel sub can stay under water for a relatively short period of time - just a few days. In addition, a diesel submarine is slow. The shortage of power, in turn, imposes serious constraints on displacement, weapons, and other key characteristics of diesel-electric submarines. In fact, these subs can hardly be referred to as "underwater" vessels. "Diving" would be a better word as they stay on the surface most of the time on deployment routes. In combat patrol areas, diesel-electric submarines have to ascend regularly and start diesel engines to recharge batteries.

 

For example, Russia's state-of-the-art diesel-electric submarine of Project 636.3 has only 400 miles of undersea navigation. In addition, the submarine moves under water at the speed of 3 knots, i.e. 5.4 km/h. Thus, such a submarine is unable to pursue an underwater target. The sub relies on intelligence information first and foremost. Hence, the main technique to use diesel-electric submarines in combat action is known as "veil" when submarines are deployed in a line perpendicular to the probable movement of the target, at specific distances from each other. The entire group of submarines receives commands from an external command post, which creates extra telltale factors and reduces the stability of underwater combat groups.

It has long been a dream for many navy engineers to create a submarine with a fundamentally new power plant that would combine the advantages of nuclear and diesel-electric submarines: power and stealth, longer autonomous diving and low noisiness. 

 

 

Project 677 Lada: Major technological breakthrough

 

Russian submarines of Project 677 Lada with air-independent power plant will mark a serious breakthrough in this direction. The new submarine will take the Russian undersea fleet to new frontiers.

The Lada sub is not large - their displacement is almost twice as less as that of the famous Varshavyanka. Yet, its arms complex is unusually large. In addition to traditional mine and torpedo weapons (six 533-mm torpedo tubes, 18 torpedoes or mines), Project 667 is the world's first non-nuclear submarine, equipped with specialized launchers for cruise missiles (ten vertical launchers in the middle part of the body). These cruise missiles can be both tactical and long-range missiles designed to destroy strategic targets deep into enemy territory. 

 

The most important feature of the new Russian submarine is the new air-independent propulsion plant. Without going into details, we would only say that with these power plants a Lada submarine will be submerged for up to 25 days - that is almost ten times longer than of its famous predecessor - Project 636.3 Varshavyanka. To crown it all, the Lada submarine will be even less noisy than the famous "black hole" Varshavyanka, which the Americans dubbed so because it is almost impossible to detect it. 

 

NATO countries, particularly Germany and Sweden, have long been trying to equip their submarines with such power plants. German shipbuilders have tried to build small submarines equipped with a hybrid power plant since late 1990s. It includes surface speed diesel engine for recharging batteries, silver-zinc batteries for energy-conserving underwater navigation and air-independent propulsion plant  for energy-saving underwater navigation on the base of fuel cells that include tanks with cryogenic oxygen and metal hydride containers (special metal alloy with hydrogen).

The Germans succeeded in increasing the duration of underwater navigation of their submarines to 20 days. Presently, German submarines with air-independent propulsion plants of various modifications are in navy service in Germany, Italy, Portugal, Turkey, Israel, Korea and several other countries.

 

Swedish group Kockums Submarin Systems began the construction of Gotland class submarines with air-independent propulsion power plants based on the so-called "Stirling engine". Swedish subs can also stay under water for up to 20 days without recharging batteries. Stirling engine submarines currently serve not only in Scandinavia, but also in Australia, Japan, Singapore and Thailand.

However, both German and Swedish submarines pale in comparison with Russian Lada submarines. Project 667 Lada is qualitatively a new generation of submarines. 

 

Rubin Design Bureau - the main developer of submarines in Russia - designed the Lada to deliver salvo torpedo-missile strikes on marine and stationary ground targets both from torpedo tubes and specialized vertical missile silos. Due to the unique sonar system, the Russian sub has a significantly increased distance for target detection. It can submerge at the depth of 300 meters, develop underwater speed of up to 21 knots and submerged endurance of 45 days. To reduce noisiness, vibration isolators are used along with all-mode propulsion motor with permanent magnets. The hull of the submarine is covered with "Molniya" ("Lightning") material that absorbs sonar signals.

The Russian air-independent propulsion power plant will be a lot more energy conserving than its German analogue with up to 25 days of continuing underwater navigation. At the same time, Lada will be substantially less expensive than the German Project 212\214 sub. 

Before 2020, the Russian Navy expects to receive 14 of new 4th generation submarines

"Four to six of such submarines can completely block closed or semi-closed water area as of the Black, Baltic and Caspian Seas. Their advantages are obvious to any naval specialist," Vice-Admiral Viktor Patrushev said in an interview with RIA Novosti in late 2010.

 

The deployment of two or three groups of Lada submarines can fundamentally change the balance of power not only in the Baltic, Caspian and Black seas, but also in the North, in the Mediterranean water areas and in the Atlantic and the Indian Ocean. In the North, in the Barents Sea, Lada will cover the routes of deployment of Russian strategic missile submarines from any activity that US and NATO forces may show. This will significantly improve the combat stability of the naval component of Russian strategic nuclear forces.

 

Presently, Russian missile cruisers are mainly on duty under the Arctic ice, where they are virtually inaccessible to enemy action. The Americans can detect, track and attack our submarine only at the stage of its transition to the ​​combat patrol area. The Lada sub is ideally suited to counter US submarines as they hear them at much greater distances.

With regard to the Mediterranean, the Atlantic and the Indian Ocean, the presence of Lada-type submarines in those waters nullifies the American naval power that is primarily based on aircraft carrier strike groups.

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21 mars 2015 6 21 /03 /mars /2015 09:40
BPC Sebastopol photo Grigory Sysoev - Sputnik

BPC Sebastopol photo Grigory Sysoev - Sputnik

 

Saint-Nazaire, 20 mars 2015 Marine & Océans (AFP)

 

Le "Sébastopol", second bâtiment de projection et de commandement (BPC) Mistral commandé par la Russie à la France, dont la livraison est suspendue du fait de la crise ukrainienne, est rentré vendredi à Saint-Nazaire (Loire-Atlantique) après ses premiers essais en mer, a constaté une correspondante de l'AFP.

 

Le bâtiment militaire, sans marin russe à bord, avait quitté son quai lundi matin pour rejoindre la forme-écluse Joubert, d'où il est parti en début d'aprés midi, après la montée des eaux, aidé par trois remorqueurs.

 

Le navire était de retour à l'entrée du port de Saint-Nazaire vendredi, peu avant 16h30. Il devrait ressortir pour de nouveaux essais en mer d'ici un mois.

 

Le "Sébastopol", dont la construction est quasiment achevée aux chantiers STX de Saint-Nazaire, doit théoriquement être livré à la Russie à l'automne 2015.

 

Mais la livraison du premier des deux navires de guerre, le "Vladivostok", qui devait être initialement remis à Moscou à la mi-novembre 2014, est suspendue et il est toujours stationné à Saint-Nazaire.

 

Paris a annoncé fin novembre le report "jusqu'à nouvel ordre" de la livraison du "Vladivostok", compte tenu du rôle de la Russie dans le conflit en Ukraine.

 

La France a depuis répété à plusieurs reprises que les conditions de la livraison n'étaient "toujours pas réunies".

 

La vente à la Russie de deux Mistral, conclue en juin 2011 sous la présidence de Nicolas Sarkozy, avait été évaluée à environ 1,2 milliard d'euros.

 

Ces BPC sont des navires de guerre polyvalents pouvant transporter des hélicoptères, des chars ou accueillir un état-major embarqué.

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20 mars 2015 5 20 /03 /mars /2015 08:50
A26 Next Generation Submarine - photo Saab

A26 Next Generation Submarine - photo Saab

 

Stockholm, 19 mars 2015 Marine & Océans (AFP)

 

La Suède va commander deux nouveaux sous-marins pour une somme maximale de 886 millions d'euros afin de renforcer sa Marine, quelques mois après le fiasco des recherches pour trouver au large de Stockholm un sous-marin soupçonné d'être russe, a annoncé jeudi le gouvernement.

 

"La commande (...) va permettre d'assurer la capacité sous-marine de la Suède au-delà de 2030", a dit le ministre de la Défense suédoise, Peter Hultqvist, cité dans un communiqué de son ministère.

 

Les appareils, de nouvelle génération, seront livrés au plus tard en 2022.

 

Le groupe d'armement et d'aéronautique Saab s'était félicité dès mardi du futur investissement de Stockholm dans deux sous-marins A 26.

 

La semaine dernière, le gouvernement avait déjà annoncé quelque 675 millions d'euros de crédits supplémentaires pour aider sa Marine à mieux défendre les côtes du pays après la déconfiture de la chasse au sous-marin présumé russe en octobre.

 

L'épisode de l'automne avait mis en lumière l'inadaptation des moyens de la Marine pour défendre l'archipel de Stockholm, dédale de chenaux où ce sous-marin avait pu se cacher pendant plusieurs jours.

 

"La capacité sous-marine est une composante centrale de la défense suédoise en temps de paix ainsi qu'en état d'alerte et en temps de guerre", a rappelé le ministère de la Défense dans son communiqué.

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:40
BPC Sebastopol photo Grigory Sysoev Sputnik

BPC Sebastopol photo Grigory Sysoev Sputnik

 

18.03.2015 Nezavissimaïa gazeta - sputniknews.com

 

Le Mistral "Sébastopol", un bâtiment de projection et de commandement (BPC) construit pour la Russie aux chantiers navals de STX France de Saint-Nazaire, a effectué sa première sortie en mer, écrit mercredi le quotidien Nezavissimaïa gazeta.

 

Le lundi 16 mars à 15h heure de Moscou, le Sébastopol accompagné par plusieurs remorqueurs s'est rendu dans le golfe de Gascogne pour ses premiers essais. Son équipage est composé exclusivement de spécialistes français de STX. Le BPC rentrera à Saint-Nazaire vendredi soir.

 

Le Mistral passe donc les essais sous pavillon français, sans représentant russe à son bord. Toutefois, certains commentaires prudents supposent que la France prépare tout de même le Sébastopol pour un transfert à la Russie. Construit dans une configuration différente du premier BPC, Vladivostok, qui était un porte-hélicoptères à part entière, le second est adapté au débarquement de véhicules blindés.

 

L'agence fédérale russe d'exportation d'armements Rosoboronexport et la société française DCNS avaient signé en juin 2011 un contrat pour la construction de deux BPC. Lorsque le premier Mistral avait effectué les essais en mer, deux équipages russes suivaient à son bord une formation pour se familiariser avec les commandes du porte-hélicoptères. Le transfert du Vladivostok à la marine russe était prévu pour novembre 2014 mais n'a pas eu lieu. De nombreux pays de l'Otan, notamment les USA, le Royaume-Uni, l'Allemagne et la Pologne, ont commencé à exiger de la France d'annuler la livraison des Mistrals à la Russie.

 

Paris a subi une pression sans précédent. Les membres de l'Otan insistaient sur le transfert du premier BPC uniquement si la situation changeait dans le sud-est de l'Ukraine et si la Russie renonçait au soutien des insurgés de Donetsk et de Lougansk. Et le président français François Hollande a cédé à cette pression. Il a annoncé à plusieurs reprises l'absence de conditions nécessaires pour que son pays honore ses engagements contractuels devant la Russie.

 

Mais mi-février, le ministre de la Défense Jean-Yves Le Drian a annoncé sur la radio RMC que la livraison des Mistrals à la Russie n'était plus à l'ordre du jour. Au même moment, l'Inde déclarait définitivement renoncer à l'achat de 126 Rafales français. Les militaires indiens qui ont suivi de près les péripéties du Mistral ont perdu toute confiance envers la France en tant que partenaire.

 

Mais même ce fiasco pour la réputation de Paris n'a pas fait changer sa position. Le premier ministre Manuel Valls a déclaré la semaine dernière au quotidien polonais Gazeta Wyborcza que la France avait pris la décision de renoncer aux livraisons des BPC à la Russie "souverainement, en dehors de toute pression, en dépit des importantes conséquences financières".

 

Hors les conséquences se font déjà sentir. D'après le Télégramme, DCNS/STX doit débourser 2,5 millions d'euros par mois pour la sécurité et l'entretien du Vladivostok au port de Saint-Nazaire. Si une fois terminé le second Mistral n'était pas non plus livré, les dépenses imprévues doubleraient. Et la France semble ignorer quoi faire avec ces navires dont personne n'a besoin en Occident.

 

Cette situation est bénéfique pour la Russie. Le directeur général de Rosoboronexport Anatoli Issaïkine a déclaré hier que dans tous les cas la France rendrait à la Russie l'argent avancé pour les Mistrals, voire même paierait une pénalité supplémentaire dont le montant sera déterminé par la Cour d'arbitrage. Mais cela prendra du temps. C'est pourquoi les négociations semblent se poursuivre avec la partie française. Anatoli Issaïkine a affirmé que la Russie prendrait une décision définitive d'ici fin avril. Il est fort probable qu'elle exige une pénalité — un paiement comptant est préférable aujourd'hui pour la Russie au regard de la hausse du taux de change.

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:30
SEAHAWK A2 - photo MSI Defence Systems

SEAHAWK A2 - photo MSI Defence Systems

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Defense Security Cooperation Agency; issued March 17, 2015)

 

Jordan - 35 Meter Coastal Patrol Boats

 

WASHINGTON --- The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to Jordan for 35-meter Coastal Patrol Boats and associated equipment, parts, training and logistical support for an estimated cost of $80 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on March 16, 2015.

 

The Government of Jordan has requested a possible sale of two 35-meter Coastal Patrol Boats with two MSI Defence Systems LTD SEAHAWK A2 DS30M-30mm Gun Weapon Systems with MK44 Bushmaster Cannons, 1,140 rounds of 30mm Target-Practice-Tracer (TP-T) ammunition, 4,020 rounds of 30mm High Explosive Incendiary with Tracer (HEI-T) ammunition, 60 rounds of 30mm inert dummy ammunition and two chaff systems, spare and repair parts, support equipment, publications and technical documentation, personnel training and training equipment, U.S. Government and contractor engineering, technical and logistics support services, and other related elements of logistical and program support. The estimated cost is $80 million.

 

This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a partner which has been, and continues to be, an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East. It is vital to the U.S. national interest that Jordan develops and maintains a strong and ready self-defense capability and enhances its ability to protect its territorial waters.

 

Jordan will have no difficulty absorbing these boats into its armed forces.

 

The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region.

 

The principal contractor is undetermined at this time and will be determined during negotiations. There are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with this potential sale.

 

Implementation of this proposed sale will require the temporary assignment of approximately two U.S. Government or contractor representatives in Jordan on an intermittent basis over the life of the case.

 

There will be no adverse impact on U.S. defense readiness as a result of this proposed sale.

 

This notice of a potential sale is required by law and does not mean the sale has been concluded.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:50
Saab Comments on the Swedish Government's Announced Investments in the Next Generation Submarine, A26

 

Mar 17, 2015 ASDNews Source : Saab AB

 

Defence and security company Saab welcomes the Swedish Minister of Defence, Peter Hultqvist’s, announcement to invest in two submarines of the next generation, A26, of a total amount of SEK 8,2 billion. The Swedish minister made the announcement in Karlskrona, Sweden.

 

Today, the Swedish Minister of Defence, Peter Hultqvist, announced that the government, on Thursday, intends to give a mandate to the Armed Forces to order two submarines.

 

Saab has not received any order on production of the new submarine but Saab looks forward to the discussions, which will lead to an agreement and order for A26. This will be a part of an earlier signed Letter of Intent.

 

Saab and FMV (The Swedish Defence Material Administration) signed a Letter of Intent in June 2014 regarding the Swedish Armed Forces’ underwater capability for the period 2015-2024. The Letter of Intent comprises support, development, design and production of submarines and other underwater systems, corresponding to potential orders of approximately SEK 11.2 billion, provided that necessary decisions are made.

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17 mars 2015 2 17 /03 /mars /2015 16:55
Le BPC Sébastopol dans le bassin de Penhöet - photo Thierry Hameau (O-F)

Le BPC Sébastopol dans le bassin de Penhöet - photo Thierry Hameau (O-F)

 

Saint-Nazaire, 16 mars 2015 Marine & Océans (AFP)

 

Le navire "Sébastopol", second bâtiment de projection et de commandement (BPC) Mistral commandé par la Russie à la France, dont la livraison est suspendue du fait de la crise ukrainienne, a quitté lundi le port de Saint-Nazaire (Loire-Atlantique) pour sa première sortie en mer, a constaté une journaliste de l'AFP.

 

Le bâtiment militaire avait quitté son quai lundi matin pour rejoindre la forme-écluse Joubert, d'où il est parti peu après 13H00 après la montée des eaux, aidé par trois remorqueurs, sans marins russes à bord.

 

Cette première sortie en mer du "Sébastopol", dont le programme n'a pas été précisé, a été suivie des yeux par des dizaines de curieux.

 

Le navire devrait regagner le port de Saint-Nazaire vendredi, selon une source proche du dossier. D'autres essais techniques sont programmés en avril.

 

Le "Sébastopol", dont la construction est quasiment achevée aux chantiers STX de Saint-Nazaire, doit théoriquement être livré à la Russie à l'automne 2015, alors que le premier des deux navires de guerre, le "Vladivostok", toujours stationné à Saint-Nazaire, devait être initialement remis à Moscou à la mi-novembre 2014.

 

Paris avait annoncé fin novembre le report "jusqu'à nouvel ordre" de la livraison du "Vladivostok", compte tenu du rôle de la Russie dans le conflit en Ukraine. La France a depuis dit à plusieurs reprises que les conditions de la livraison n'étaient "toujours pas réunies".

 

La vente à la Russie de deux Mistral, conclue en juin 2011 sous la présidence de Nicolas Sarkozy, avait été évaluée à environ 1,2 milliard d'euros. Ces BPC sont des navires de guerre polyvalents pouvant transporter des hélicoptères, des chars ou accueillir un état-major embarqué.

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17 mars 2015 2 17 /03 /mars /2015 12:25
photo FAA - Marine Nationale

photo FAA - Marine Nationale

 

16 03 2015 par FAA

 

Mercredi 11 mars 2015, le bâtiment de transport léger (BATRAL) Dumont d’Urville a retrouvé son élément naturel, l’eau salée de la mer des Antilles lors de sa remise à flot.

 

Pendant près de trois mois, l’équipage du Dumont d’Urville, en lien avec un maître d’œuvre industriel et les moyens militaires de soutien, a réalisé plus de 800 lignes de travaux au bassin de Radoub. Le passage au sec du bâtiment aura notamment permis d’effectuer des travaux sur les machines, de réfection de la plate-forme hélicoptère et des locaux vie de l’équipage.

 

A présent accosté à la base navale de Fort-de-France, le Dumont entame une période d’essais à quai avant de reprendre la mer pour une ultime phase de vérification et valider ensuite la fin de cet arrêt technique majeur. Le Dumont entamera alors une période d’entrainements à la mer pour permettre à l’équipage de reprendre ses marques et être prêt à remplir parfaitement toutes les missions qui leurs seront ordonnées.

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15 mars 2015 7 15 /03 /mars /2015 12:20
Navy Lays Keel on Future Littoral Combat Ship Omaha

 

Mar 12, 2015 ASDNews Source : US Navy

 

Austal USA shipyard held a keel laying ceremony for the sixth Independence variant littoral combat ship, the future USS Omaha (LCS 12), Feb. 18.

With Austal USA as the shipbuilder, teamed with General Dynamics as the combat systems provider, the future USS Omaha will be approximately 420 feet in length and have a waterline beam of greater than 100 feet.

 

Read more

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13 mars 2015 5 13 /03 /mars /2015 17:55
source Marine Nationale

source Marine Nationale

 

12 mars 2015. Portail des Sous-Marins

 

Les nouveaux bâtiments de soutien et d’assistance hauturiers de la Marine nationale seront commandés « à la rentrée », a indiqué hier le ministre de la Défense. Destinés à remplacer les remorqueurs de haute mer (RHM) Tenace (1973) et Malabar (1976), le remorqueur ravitailleur (RR) Revi (1985), ainsi que les bâtiments de soutien de région (BSR) Chevreuil (1977), Elan et Gazelle (1978), les BSAH seront construits à quatre exemplaires.

 

Référence : Mer & marine

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13 mars 2015 5 13 /03 /mars /2015 12:45
Une des frégates marocaines en forme 2 de la réparation navale - photo Ouest-France

Une des frégates marocaines en forme 2 de la réparation navale - photo Ouest-France

 

12 mars 2015. Portail des Sous-Marins

 

Le chantier Damen Shiprepair a reçu ce week-end deux frégates de la marine royale marocaine qui auraient dû arriver le 26 février. Ces deux navires militaires, venus pour un arrêt technique et un entretien classique resteront deux semaines en forme de radoub et une semaine à quai.

 

Référence : Ouest-France

 

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13 mars 2015 5 13 /03 /mars /2015 08:55
FREMM Aquitaine - photo DCNS

FREMM Aquitaine - photo DCNS

 

11/03/2015 LeMarin.fr

 

Lors d’une conférence de presse ce mercredi 11 mars, Jean-Yves Le Drian a confirmé que les premières sociétés de projets, destinées à porter financièrement certains matériels militaires pour les relouer ensuite aux armées (étalant ainsi, moyennant intérêts, leur coût d’acquisition), seront mises en place dès 2015. Ceci dès que la loi Macron, qui en prévoit la création, sera promulguée, ce que le gouvernement espère être fait à l’été. Dans la foulée, les deux premières sociétés de projets (SDP) seront mises en place. L’une pour trois frégates Fremm, en l’occurrence les plus avancées. L’autre pour quatre appareils de transport militaire A400M.

 

Ces deux premières SDP seront alimentées par le produit de cessions de participations de l’État. Ultérieurement, des fonds privés seront apportés aux SDP suivantes, les industriels concernés devant à l’évidence s’attendre à être sollicités. Interrogé sur les réticences notoires de Bercy (non seulement sur le surcoût engendré au final par ce processus de leasing, mais aussi par le fait que les montants financés ne seront pas évacués du décompte de la dette publique), Jean-Yves Le Drian a précisé que le président de la République ayant annoncé leur création (à bord du Charles de Gaulle en janvier), il obéit et les met en œuvre.  Et au passage ajoute que les SDP pourront également porter sur des prestations de services. On pense en la matière à des contrats de maintien en condition opérationnelle.

 

Le ministre de la Défense a également été interrogé quant au remplacement, pour la Marine nationale, de la Fremm Normandie, qui lui a été prélevée pour livraison à l’Égypte. Il a répondu que la Marine disposerait du nombre prévu de frégates Fremm et que la procédure de commande de l’unité nécessaire à la Marine devait être engagée immédiatement.

 

En ce qui concerne le programme des quatre BSAH (bâtiments de soutien et d’assistance hauturiers), Jean-Yves Le Drian a précisé que la notification du contrat devait intervenir en 2015. Ces quatre navires de 65 mètres avaient déjà fait l’objet d’un premier appel d’offres sollicitant des partenariats public-privé, sans que les offres soient alors jugées satisfaisantes.

 

Autre point important : les déflations d’effectifs initialement demandées aux armées (34 000 hommes) seront pour une seconde fois amoindries. Le ministre de la Défense a indiqué que des besoins nouveaux sont identifiés en matière de lutte contre le terrorisme, le président de la République ayant annoncé la création d’une force permanente de 7 000 hommes sur le sol français (au sein de l'armée de Terre). En conséquence, les 7 500 postes qui avaient déjà été épargnés devraient être plus nombreux.

 

Les attentats de janvier à Paris auront aussi pour conséquence d'avancer en juin l'actualisation (il ne s'agira pas d'une révision) de la loi de programmation militaire prévue en fin d'année.

 

Hors conférence de presse, on s'interrogeait sur le calendrier personnel de Jean-Yves Le Drian. On le sait désireux de représenter à nouveau le PS en Bretagne aux élections régionales de décembre, mais également très apprécié par l’Élysée à son poste actuel. Le ministre souhaite, dit-on, assurer quoi qu'il en soit ses fonctions actuelles jusqu’à la fin de l’année. À cette date, il aura pu veiller au bon déroulement des mesures qu’il vient d’annoncer.

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13 mars 2015 5 13 /03 /mars /2015 08:35
Dalian shipyard

Dalian shipyard

 

Pékin, 13 mars 2015 Marine & Océans (AFP)

 

La Chine est bien en train de construire un deuxième porte-avions, a déclaré à la presse une responsable militaire chinoise, fournissant une confirmation explicite de ce qui est devenu un secret de polichinelle.

 

Le premier porte-avions chinois, le "Liaoning", admis au service actif en septembre 2012, est issu d'un bâtiment inachevé vendu en 1998 par l'Ukraine.

 

Pour son deuxième porte-avions, l'Armée populaire de libération (APL) veut relever le défi d'une construction 100% nationale.

 

"Nous avons importé le premier porte-avions afin d'être capables par la suite de construire le nôtre", a déclaré Mme Liang Fang, officier de marine et professeur à l'Université de la défense nationale.

 

"Eh bien, comme certains médias l'ont révélé, c'est ce que nous réalisons: construire le deuxième porte-avions".

 

Selon elle la Chine a "accumulé beaucoup d'expérience" sur le chantier de rénovation du Liaoning, ce qui lui a permis de passer à "l'étape suivante".

 

Mme Liang s'exprimait mercredi en marge de la session annuelle l'Assemblée nationale populaire (ANP, Parlement), actuellement réunie à Pékin, et ses propos ont été reproduits par la presse étatique.

 

L'APL, qui cultive le secret sur ses programmes d'armement, se garde d'admettre officiellement qu'elle construit un second porte-avions, mais ce secret a été éventé à plusieurs reprises.

 

A chaque fois que cela s'est produit, les articles de presse ou les communiqués publiés ont été rapidement effacés.

 

En s'équipant de porte-avions, outil de projection de puissance par excellence, la Chine selon les experts assume le risque d'écorner l'image qu'elle veut donner d'elle-même: celle d'un pays qui s'arme uniquement pour se défendre, sans prétendre à l'hégémonie.

PLAN Liaoning aircraft carrier (CV-16)

PLAN Liaoning aircraft carrier (CV-16)

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13 mars 2015 5 13 /03 /mars /2015 08:35
Footage from a CCTV broadcast showing the aircraft carrier catapult (Internet photo)

Footage from a CCTV broadcast showing the aircraft carrier catapult (Internet photo)


9 March 2015 Pacific Sentinel
 

A recently unveiled satellite photo showing China testing an aircraft carrier launch system has led experts to believe China has made a breakthrough in the design of its catapult system.

 

China Central Television (CCTV) reported that the catapult being tested to help planes take off quickly is more efficient than the "ski-jump" ramp used to launch aircraft on China's first carrier, the Liaoning.

 

The report said the catapult enables aircraft to be launched quickly, upgrading their combat efficiency.

 

Li Li, a military expert in China, said catapult takeoff device technology is currently dominated by the United States, but if the satellite photo is true, it means that China has "made a groundbreaking and strategic breakthrough" in aircraft carrier technology.

 

Li said both steam and electromagnetic catapults are used to launch aircraft, with the United States the first country to use the electromagnetic launch system.

 

Read the full story at Want China Times

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12 mars 2015 4 12 /03 /mars /2015 12:25
LUPO class frigates GENERAL SOUBLETTE (F-24) and GENERAL SALOM (F-25) docked alongside in port - photo US DoD

LUPO class frigates GENERAL SOUBLETTE (F-24) and GENERAL SALOM (F-25) docked alongside in port - photo US DoD

 

11 mars 2015. Portail des Sous-Marins

 

La frégate lance-missiles General Soublette de la marine vénézuélienne va subir d’importantes réparations dans un chantier naval militaire à Cuba.

 

La frégate sera réparé au chantier naval Granma, des Forces Armées Révolutionnaires de Cuba. Le montant des travaux s’élève à 104,6 millions $.

 

Le contrat entre Cuba et le Venezuela prévoit une « maintenance préventive importante de la structure de la coque et des systèmes annexes ».

 

La frégate fait parti d’un groupe de 6 unités de la classe Mariscal Sucre, construit en Italie entre 1980 et 1982.

 

Référence : Cuba Headlines

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11 mars 2015 3 11 /03 /mars /2015 17:20
DDG 1000 on the Kennebec (20 Feb 2015) - photo General Dynamics Bath Iron Works

DDG 1000 on the Kennebec (20 Feb 2015) - photo General Dynamics Bath Iron Works

 

March 10, 2015 By Christopher P. Cavas – Defense News

 

WASHINGTON — Problems with the complex technology being installed in the new destroyers of the Zumwalt class have forced the Navy and shipbuilder General Dynamics Bath Iron Works to delay delivery of the first two ships, the US Navy said Monday night.

 

The Zumwalt (DDG 1000) had been scheduled to be delivered to the Navy this summer, but that has dropped back to November. Delivery of the second ship, Michael Monsoor (DDG 1001), production of which is about a year behind Zumwalt, has also been pushed back a few months in 2016, to November of that year.

 

Work on the third and last ship in the class, Lyndon B. Johnson (DDG 1002), has not been affected, and that ship is still scheduled for delivery in December 2018.

 

"The schedule delay is due primarily to the challenges encountered with completing installation, integration and testing of the highly unique, leading edge technology designed into this first-of-class warship," Cmdr. Thurraya Kent, spokeswoman for the Navy's acquisition directorate, said in a statement.

 

The three ships are all under construction at GD's shipyard in Bath, Maine. Zumwalt was launched last October and is 94 percent complete, Kent said, and the ship is expected to begin engineering sea trials later this year. Monsoor is scheduled for launch this year as well.

 

Bath also builds Aegis destroyers of the DDG 51 Arleigh Burke class. Completion delays with Zumwalt and Monsoor could affect Aegis destroyer production, Kent indicated.

 

"Navy and General Dynamics Bath Iron Works continue to work together in evaluating schedule impacts for all ships under construction in Bath, Maine, which also includes ships under construction for the Aegis Class Destroyer Program," Kent said in the statement. "Both the Navy and BIW are committed to collectively managing risks and controlling costs to deliver both DDG 1000 and DDG 51-class ships to the fleet in the most efficient manner possible."

 

The DDG 1000 design features an innovative, integrated power system able to switch electrical power between propulsion, sensor and weapon systems, along with a new combat system and numerous technical innovations. The Pentagon's Office of Test and Evaluation did not discuss the DDG 1000 in its latest report on selected acquisition programs, issued in January, and in its report a year earlier did not discuss any major technical problems with the ships' construction.

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11 mars 2015 3 11 /03 /mars /2015 17:20
PCU Colorado (SSN 788) - photo US Navy

PCU Colorado (SSN 788) - photo US Navy

 

Mar 10, 2015 ASDNews Source : US Navy

 

The U.S. Navy held a keel laying ceremony for the Virginia-class submarine Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Colorado (SSN 788) at General Dynamics Electric Boat, March 7.

 

The initials of the submarine's sponsor, Annie Mabus, were welded onto a steel plate that will be permanently affixed to the submarine. Mabus is the daughter of Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus.

 

Read more

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11 mars 2015 3 11 /03 /mars /2015 12:50
HMS Prince of Wales build intensifies


11 mars 2015 Royal Navy

 

The build profile of HMS Prince of Wales intensifies as blocks are moved around the yard to accommodate the programme of lifts including that of the Gas Turbine Alternator. This video shows one of the sponsons being moved.

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