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16 octobre 2015 5 16 /10 /octobre /2015 16:20
Surface Forces: The Zumwalts Are Fading Away

 

October 16, 2015: Harold C. Hutchison – Strategy PAge

 

The American Zumwalt class destroyers may find its production run truncated yet again, as reports indicate that the third ship of the class, Lyndon B. Johnson (DDG 1002), is on the budget chopping block. The result would leave the Navy with two of the advanced destroyers. Initially these radically new destroyers were meant to replace four Iowa-class battleships and 31 Spruance-class destroyers. The Zumwalts proved too expensive and mass production was cancelled.

 

DDG 1002 was already slated for some changes from the first two units of the class (Zumwalt and Michael Monsoor). DDG 1002 was to receive a steel deckhouse as opposed to the composite deckhouses used on the other two ships. This was meant to save money. There had also been a chance that one of the 155mm guns would be replaced with an electromagnetic railgun on DDG 1002. The electromagnetic railgun is another expensive navy effort that may see introduction delayed a long time because of cost considerations.

 

The Zumwalt class was planned to include 32 ships – more than enough to replace the 31 Spruance-class destroyers that were retired early in the 1990s and early 2000s. Armed with two 155mm guns, and 80 VLS cells while reaching a speed of up to 56 kilometers per hour, the 14,000-ton ships specifically designed to replace the Spruances in the land attack mission, which they had shifted to after the end of the Cold War. But it soon became apparent that many aspects of the Zumwalts were too ambitious. For example they were originally intended to have the Mk 110 57mm gun, but the Navy instead elected to install the cheaper and less capable Mk46 Bushmaster II, a 30mm cannon. The Zumwalts’ also incorporate a lot of automation and require a crew of only 150 but increased development and construction costs more than expected. 

 

The Zumwalt class was also hit hard by the navy budget crunch caused by so much money being shifted to the army after 2001 for operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. Even before construction of the lead ship was funded in 2005, the class had been cut, first to 24, then to 7, then to 3, as costs kept climbing and navy requests for larger budgets went unanswered. The thing is, cutting the production run had the perverse effect of making the Zumwalt’s cost problems increase. Spreading the R&D cost of $9.6 billion over the original 32 ships would have only added $300 million to the price of each ship. By cutting the program to three units, each ship now shoulders $3.2 billion of the R&D costs.

 

Would the Zumwalt class have been a success? Two other high-tech programs that were truncated early, the F-22 and Seawolf-class submarine, indicating the answer might have been “Yes.” Instead, the Zumwalt will be widely derided as a failure, when the blame rests not on the designers or the Navy, but instead the budget-cutters. Meanwhile, the Navy will have a hard time finding enough hulls in the water to handle the many missions it will have.

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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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14 décembre 2013 6 14 /12 /décembre /2013 12:20
Raytheon awarded $75 million for DDG 1000 program

 

 

TEWKSBURY, Mass., Dec. 12, 2013 /PRNewswire

 

Delivering critical capabilities, bringing the next-generation destroyers to life

 

Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) has been awarded $75 million to complete remaining hardware and electronics for DDG 1000 and 1001, the first two ships of the Zumwalt-class of multimission destroyers. The award reflects exercised options under a previously awarded U.S. Navy contract.

 

Raytheon's progress on the program continues, remaining on-cost and schedule, meeting all program milestones and shipyard need dates. Under this contract, Raytheon will complete outstanding hardware and electronics production and assembly for the first two ships of the class, including electronics for the multi-function towed array for the sonar suite; canister electronics and uptake kits for the MK 57 Vertical Launching System; and the advanced procurement of Electronic Modular Enclosure shelters for the third ship, DDG 1002.

 

"The collaboration of this government-industry team has been outstanding, a high-performing team of experts working together to bring the Navy's vision to reality," said Raytheon's Kevin Peppe, vice president of Integrated Defense Systems' Seapower Capability Systems business area. "As systems and deliveries complete, and integration and testing continue, we are advancing closer to demonstrating the capabilities of the most technologically advanced surface combatant in naval history."

 

As the prime mission systems integrator for DDG 1000, Raytheon provides all electronic and combat systems for the program.

 

To date, the company has:

 

    Delivered more than 3,500 hardware items, completing mission systems equipment production for DDG 1000. Production is more than 95 percent complete for DDG 1001.

    Delivered 35 fully populated, integrated and tested Electronic Modular Enclosures, completing the first two ship sets as well as an additional 3 EMEs for the Self-Defense Test Ship.

    Completed more than 6.7 million lines of code for the Total Ship Computing Environment, the integrated mission system for the ship class, achieving all testing and readiness milestones on schedule. Currently 96 percent complete, TSCE software is approaching next level certification, Technology Readiness Level 7.

    Completed advanced ship activation pilot for DDG 1000, demonstrating control of pumps and valves; first use of shipboard software connecting distributed control workstation, TSCE infrastructure network and engineering control system.

    Tested 5,000 hull, mechanical and engineering (HM&E) signals to engineering control system and validated 12,000 additional hardware signals, at the Land-based Test Site.

    Completed more than 1.3 million lines of code for SPY-3/Dual Band Radar for DDG 1000, DDG 1001, CVN 78 and the Self Defense Test Ship and delivered complete radar suite equipment for all ship sets.

    Dedicated a team of experts onsite at the shipyard, supporting installation, integration and test in-line with construction progress to meet HM&E milestones and prepare for ship activation.

    Remained on cost and schedule throughout execution of the program – a testament to the design and development approaches employed, mitigating risks and maturing technologies through phased and incremental testing.

 

Additionally, the first MK 57 Vertical Launch System and the first Integrated Undersea Warfare suite, with dual-frequency, hull-mounted sonars, have been installed on DDG 1000.

 

DDG 1000 entered the water Oct. 28, 2013, at Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine. Construction will continue dockside, supported by Raytheon's Ship Integration and Test team onsite for ongoing system integration and testing.

 

About Raytheon

 

Raytheon Company, with 2012 sales of $24 billion and 68,000 employees worldwide, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, security and civil markets throughout the world. With a history of innovation spanning 91 years, Raytheon provides state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration and other capabilities in the areas of sensing; effects; and command, control, communications and intelligence systems; as well as a broad range of mission support services. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Mass. For more about Raytheon, visit us at www.raytheon.com and follow us on Twitter @Raytheon.

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25 novembre 2013 1 25 /11 /novembre /2013 18:20
Hagel Visits First Zumwalt-Class Destroyer

 

 

Nov. 25, 2013 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: U.S Department of Defense; issued November 21, 2013)

 

BATH, Maine --- Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said the not-yet-launched Zumwalt-class destroyer he toured here today “represents the cutting edge of our naval capabilities.”

 

The ship, now known as the Pre-Commissioning Unit, or PCU, Zumwalt, will become the USS Zumwalt, named for former Navy Adm. Elmo Zumwalt. Officials said the ship is about a year away from joining the fleet. (Emphasis added—Ed)

 

Now littered with large protective crates storing systems not yet installed, the ship is being fitted with new automated systems. The Zumwalt, Navy officials explained, has highly accurate long-range weapons, an impressive power generation capability and a design emphasizing “stealthy” radar-defeating materials and shapes.

 

The ship will be home ported in San Diego, Hagel noted, and it “represents an important shift … in America’s interests to the Asia-Pacific,” he told a mixed crowd of sailors, government civilians and General Dynamics employees assembled near where the ship is docked.

 

Hagel thanked General Dynamics and its workforce at Bath Iron Works, which will produce all three of the Zumwalt-class ships planned for production. The secretary called the facility “a magnificent institution that’s been part of the security of this country for 130 years.”

 

The secretary also spoke to a number of sailors and defense civilians present, who are working to get the ship ready for active duty. Hagel thanked them and their families for their service.

 

Sharon E. Burke, assistant secretary of defense for operational energy plans and programs, accompanied Hagel’s delegation on the ship tour. Later, she spoke to reporters while en route to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where Hagel landed later in the day for an international security forum that starts tomorrow.

 

Burke said that the ship’s power generation capacity -- 78 megawatts, impressed her. One megawatt of power can power about 1,000 American homes.

 

The massive amount of available power makes the ship expandable for future weapon systems such as rail guns, which “take a lot of pulse power,” Burke noted.

 

“Also, you’re running a lot of very sophisticated systems on that ship,” she said. “It gives them a lot of room to be able to run all those systems.”

 

The ship can generate 78 megawatts of power, and can channel it to propulsion, shipboard use and weapons systems. Officials said the guided missile destroyer is the first Navy ship to be fully electrical, and it was designed to use automated systems as much as possible to decrease the number of sailors needed as crew.

 

For example, officials said, automatic systems route, store and load the 300 rounds of 24-pound ammunition each of the ship’s two 155mm guns can fire. The guns have, in testing, successfully fired at a rate of 10 rounds a minute and with 20- to 40-inch accuracy at a range of more than 60 nautical miles, officials noted.

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30 octobre 2013 3 30 /10 /octobre /2013 08:20
Zumwalt – the Newest Destroyer for the US Navy is Launched

The Zumwalt-class guided-missile destroyer DDG 1000 is floated out of dry dock at the General Dynamics Bath Iron Works shipyard. The ship, the first of three Zumwalt-class destroyers, will provide independent forward presence and deterrence, support special operations forces and operate as part of joint and combined expeditionary forces. Photo: General Dynamics

 

October 29, 2013 defense-update.com

 

General Dynamics Bath Iron Works (BIW) successfully launched the Navy’s first Zumwalt-class destroyer Oct. 28 at their Bath, Maine shipyard. The future USS Zumwalt (DDG 1000) will be the lead ship of the Navy’s newest destroyer class, designed for littoral operations and land attack. At 610 feet (186 meter) long, and 15,610 (long) tons displacement, the Zumwalt looks unlike any ship the navy has sailed, with an angular superstructure, a low-slung “tumblehome” hull to “pierce” waves for a smoother ride, Other new provisions include electric propulsion and a futuristic bridge, that looks more like it belongs on Star Trek’s USS Enterprise than a real Navy ship.

 

The $4 billion warship, built by Bath Iron Works in Maine, was launched on the Kennebec River Monday, five years after construction began. The Zumwalt, hull number DDG-1000, was meant to be the first of a class to replace the DDG-51 Arleigh Burke-class destroyers. Rising construction costs caused caused the Pentagon to tack, limiting the program to just three Zumwalts. They are 100 feet longer than their predecessor, but require half the crew.

 

Zumwalt – the Newest Destroyer for the US Navy is Launched

The ship began its translation from Bath Iron Works’ land-level construction facility to a floating dry dock on Friday. Once loaded into the dry dock, the dock was flooded and the ship was removed from its specially designed cradle. By late Monday, the dock had been flooded and the ship was floated off and tied to a pier on the Kennebec River. Photo: General Dynamics

 

Because of the complexity of the first-of-class ship, the Navy will perform a two-phase delivery process. Bath Iron Works will deliver the ship itself to the Navy in late 2014. Upon delivery, the Navy will then conduct combat systems activation, tests and trials, to include multiple underway periods. The ship is expected to reach its initial operating capability in 2016. The BIW will deliver the USS Zumwalt in fall of 2015. DDG-1001, the USS Michael Monsoor, is scheduled for 2016 delivery, and the DDG-1002, USS Lyndon B. Johnson, is expected in 2018.

 

As one of the Defense Department’s largest acquisition organizations, PEO Ships, an affiliated PEO of the Naval Sea Systems Command, is responsible for executing the development and procurement of all major surface combatants, amphibious ships, special mission and support ships and special warfare craft.

 

Zumwalt – the Newest Destroyer for the US Navy is Launched

The Zumwalt floating after the completed launch. “The launch was unprecedented in both its size and complexity,” said Capt. Jim Downey, the Zumwalt-class program manager for the Navy’s Program Executive Office, Ships.

 

The ship, the first of three Zumwalt-class destroyers, will provide independent forward presence and deterrence, support special operations forces and operate as part of joint and combined expeditionary forces. The Navy has incorporated many new technologies into the ship’s unique tumblehome hull, including an all-electric integrated power system and an Advanced Gun System, designed to fire rocket-powered, precision projectiles 63-nautical miles. The vessel will carry two MH-60R helicopters or one MH-60R and three unmanned vertical takeoff and landing unmanned helicopters (VTUAS). The Zumwalt’s 148 sailors will also enjoy improved on-board amenities, with fewer sailors per quarters, high-end food preparation and satellite laptops.

 

The USS Zumwalt may be the biggest destroyer ever built for the Navy, but it should be the hardest to spot on radar. The shape of the superstructure and the arrangement of its antennas significantly reduce the ship’s radar cross section, making the ship less visible to enemy radar at sea. The design also allows for optimal manning with a standard crew size of 130 and an aviation detachment of 28 Sailors thereby decreasing lifecycle operations and support costs.

 

Construction began on DDG 1000 in February 2009, and the Navy and its industry partners have worked to mature the ship’s design and ready their industrial facilities to build this advanced surface combatant. Zumwalt is currently more than 87 percent complete, and the shipbuilder will continue remaining construction work on the hull prior to planned delivery late next year.

 

The lead ship and class are named in honor of former Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Elmo R. “Bud” Zumwalt Jr., who served as chief of naval operations from 1970-1974. The official christening of the ship was cancelled earlier this month. Originally scheduled for Oct. 19, the ceremony was postponed until a future date due to the US administration shutdown.

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27 mai 2013 1 27 /05 /mai /2013 11:20
source US Navy

source US Navy

 

 

May 27, 2013 ASDNews Source : General Dynamics Corporation

 

On Thursday, May 23, General Dynamics Bath Iron Works celebrated the keel laying of Michael Monsoor (DDG 1001), the second ship in the planned three-ship Zumwalt class of guided-missile destroyers.

 

The ship is named for Petty Officer Second Class Michael Monsoor, a U.S. Navy SEAL who was killed in Ramadi, Iraq, in 2006. Monsoor was on a joint SEAL-Iraqi Army team operating from a rooftop when an insurgent threw a grenade at them. Monsoor jumped on the grenade, covering it and saving three fellow SEALS and eight Iraqi Army soldiers. Monsoor posthumously received the Medal of Honor from President George W. Bush on April 8, 2008. He was also awarded the Bronze Star and the Silver Star for his service in Iraq.

 

Michael Monsoor’s parents, Sally and George Monsoor, authenticated the keel at Bath Iron Works on May 23. Sally Monsoor is the ship’s sponsor. A special steel plate containing the initials of Sally and George Monsoor was prepared for the ceremony. The two authenticated the laying of the keel by striking welding arcs onto the steel plate, assisted by David Brown, a 35-year Bath Iron Works welder.

 

“Thank you from the Monsoor family for your hospitality and your spirit here at the shipyard,” said Sally Monsoor. “I can't wait to come back here with my children and grandchildren.”

 

The keel unit is the 4,400-ton, heavily outfitted mid-forebody section of the ship, which was moved from the shipyard’s Ultra Hall construction facility earlier in the month onto the building ways.

 

Brent West, DDG 1000 program manager for Bath Iron Works, hosted the ceremony and welcomed the audience of several hundred Bath Iron Works employees, Navy personnel and representatives of other major subcontractors in the program.

 

“This is a special day, as it marks a milestone in the construction of a ship, a tradition that goes back to the earliest days of shipbuilding – an event that’s been done for hundreds of years in this region, and for more than 120 years here at Bath Iron Works,” said West. “Over the next two years, we will continue to build the Michael Monsoor with knowledge and expertise honed over the decades. We look forward to future visits with Mr. and Mrs. Monsoor, as we progress toward delivering a ship that is worthy of the name of Michael Monsoor.”

 

CAPT James Downey, the Navy’s DDG 1000 Class program manager, spoke about Petty Officer Monsoor’s sacrifice and encouraged those present to “build this ship for Mike.”

 

The DDG-1000 Zumwalt-class destroyer is the U.S. Navy’s next-generation, guided-missile naval destroyer, leading the way for a new generation of advanced multi-mission surface combat ships. The ships will feature a low radar profile, an integrated power system and a total ship computing environment infrastructure. Armed with an array of weapons, the Zumwalt-class destroyers will provide offensive, distributed and precision fires in support of forces ashore. Bath Iron Works is the lead designer and builder for the program which employs approximately 5,300 people.

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