Document: Government Accountability Office Report on the Ford Class Carrier

September 6, 2013 7:44 AM

From the Sept. 5, 2013 GAO report:

What GAO Found:

The Navy faces technical, design, and construction challenges to completing
Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) that have led to significant cost increases and reduced
the likelihood that a fully functional ship will be delivered on time. The Navy has achieved mixed progress to date developing CVN 78’s critical technologies, such as a system intended to more effectively launch aircraft from the ship. In an effort
to meet required installation dates aboard CVN 78, the Navy has elected to
produce some of these systems prior to demonstrating their maturity—a strategy
that GAO’s previous work has shown introduces risk of late and costly design
changes and rework, and leaves little margin to incorporate additional weight
growth in the ship. In addition, progress in constructing CVN 78 has been
overshadowed by inefficient out-of-sequence work, driven largely by material
shortfalls, engineering challenges, and delays developing and installing critical
technology systems. These events are occurring in a constrained budget
environment, even as lead ship costs have increased by over 22 percent since
construction authorization in fiscal year 2008—to $12.8 billion. Additional
increases could follow due to uncertainties facing critical technology systems and
shipbuilder underperformance.

Sam LaGrone

Sam LaGrone

Sam LaGrone is the editor of USNI News. He has covered legislation, acquisition and operations for the Sea Services since 2009 and spent time underway with the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and the Canadian Navy.
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