Navy Secretary Ray Mabus said he’s confident the sea service is taking the right steps to get its ship maintenance back on track, after a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report noted declining material readiness of Navy ships and particularly those homeported overseas. Read More
The following is the May 29, 2015 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, Navy Force Structure: Sustainable Plan and Comprehensive Assessment Needed to Mitigate Long-Term Risks to Ships Assigned to Overseas Homeports. Read More
The following is the May 27, 2015 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, Sequestration: Documenting and Assessing Lessons Learned Would Assist DOD in Planning for Future Budget Uncertainty. The report was called for in the Fiscal Year 2014 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to review the “implementation and effects” of the FY 2013 sequestration cuts levied on the Department of Defense. Read More
The following is Government Accountability Office report, Unmanned Carrier-Based Aircraft System: Navy Needs to Demonstrate Match between Its Requirements and Available Resources. The report was released on May 4, 2015. Read More
The following is a July 30, 2014 report from the Government Accountability Office, Littoral Combat Ship: Additional Testing and Improved Weight Management Needed Prior to Further Investments.
The following is a the Government Accountability Office report, Deployment of USS Freedom Revealed Risks in Implementing Operational Concepts and Uncertain Costs. The report was released on July 8, 2014. Read More
The following is a Government Accountability Office report on U.S. Coast Guard acquisitions released on June 18, 2014. Read More
From the outside, the so-called deckhouse of the Aegis Ashore anti-missile system looks nothing like its seagoing counterpart installed on American warships. The multi-story modular building might seem more at home in an industrial park.
Just like the shipboard version, however, the shore-side deckhouse provides the power, space and cooling to accommodate the servers, consoles and pipes needed to operate an SPY-1D(V) Aegis radar system, along with the command-and-control equipment needed to launch interceptors or to dispatch ballistic missiles. Read More
Congress will likely hold hearings on the state of the Littoral Combat Ship program, Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.) , the chairman of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection forces, told reporters on Tuesday.
“We are going to do some intensive oversight of this program, which will include hearings,” Forbes said in a report from Reuters.
The hearings are prompted by an anticipated Government Accountability Office report that will likely advise Congress to slow down acquisition of the program so the ships and the planned mission packages.
“I have felt that LCS had bumps in the road but it was moving. The only thing that’s really raising this flag is what this GAO report may or may not say,” Forbes said.
Excerpts of a draft GAO LCS report have appeared in several press outlets. The draft recommends Congress slow down acquisition of the ships and the mission packages pending further study.
“The apparent disconnect between the LCS acquisition strategy and the needs of the end user suggests that a pause is needed,” a draft of the GAO report was quoted in a Friday Bloomberg story. “Congress is in a position to slow funding… pending the results of the technical studies that are already underway.”
The U.S. Navy currently plans to acquire 52 LCS hulls to round out the low-end of the Navy’s surface combatant roster. The two hulls being built — Lockheed Martin’s Freedom-class and Austal USA’s Independence-class — are part of a dual acquisition strategy formulated in 2010. After a fierce competition between Austal’s aluminum trimaran and Lockheed’s steel mono-hull design, the Navy elected to buy both versions in a deal for 20 ships with an estimated value of $8.9 billion.
In addition to four ships the Navy funded outside of the 2010 deal, the Navy’s current plan is to buy 24 ships with both hulls.
In November, Vice Adm. Tom Copeman, commander of U.S. Surface Forces, sent a classified memo to Navy leadership that advised narrowing down to a single LCS design modified to carry more weapons than the current version or an entirely new class of ship.