An X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System (UCAS) demonstrator sits on an aircraft elevator of the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77) on May 6.
In a letter to Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus on Tuesday, members of Congress questioned the Pentagon’s direction in creating a next-generation, carrier-based unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV).
The letter from the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection Forces—obtained by USNI News—was signed by chairman Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.) and ranking member Rep. Mike McIntyre (D-N.C.). It asks the Navy to develop the planned Unmanned Carrier-Launched Surveillance and Strike (UCLASS) UAV that would fully integrate with the carrier air wing. Read More
USS Port Royal (CG-73) departs Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in 2012. US Navy Photo
The Navy is revising how badly a Ticonderoga-class (CG-47) cruiser the service wants to scrap was damaged in a 2009 grounding.
Damage to USS Port Royal (CG-73) — which ran aground in 2009 near Hawaii— is, ”not as extensive as previously believed,” according to a May Naval Sea Systems Command report to Congress obtained by USNI News. Read More
Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS John S. McCain (DDG-56), front, the Republic of Korea Navy Aegis-class destroyer ROKS Seoae-Yu-Seong-Ryong (DDG-993), middle, and the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS McCampbell (DDG-85). US Navy Photo
The Navy is confident it has enough space, power and cooling onboard the hull of its planned new line of destroyers to accommodate the planned high-powered Air and Missile Defense Radar (AMDR), Capt. Mark Vandroff, Naval Sea Systems Command program manager for the DDG-51 shipbuilding program, told USNI News in an interview on Thursday.
However, the Arleigh Burke- class destroyer (DDG-51) Flight III would be limited in the amount of additional weapons the ship could accommodate — including electromagnetic railguns and high-energy lasers — without removing other capabilities. Read More
Artist Concept of a DDG-51 Flight III. Lockheed Martin Photo
A congressional committee is calling into question the Navy’s plan to adapt an almost 30-year old hull design to be the centerpiece of the service’s future ballistic missile defense strategy.
Included in the mark from the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection forces, is a requirement for the Navy to create a report on the Flight III Arleigh Burke-class (DDG-51) guided missile destroyer. Read More
Rep. J. Randy Forbes is chairman of the House Armed Services Readiness Subcommittee. The Virginia Republican has held several hearings on naval readiness in the current Congress. He will be part of a panel on the looming fiscal cliff— that could result in a 10 percent reduction in defense spending—at Defense Forum Washington hosted by the U.S. Naval Institute next week.
Rep. Forbes, you said Wednesday that you’re expecting to see sequestration in some form in January. Could you expand on that?
Obviously we are still hopeful to divert sequestration from taking place. The clock is ticking. We continue to believe that defense has already paid its share and shouldn’t be cut in such an arbitrary and drastic fashion. But it’s going to take an awful lot to keep from going over the cliff.
Since Congress passed the “Two-Ocean Navy Bill” in 1940, the U.S. Navy has been sized to operate simultaneously in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. First during the Second World War and then later against Soviet naval forces, the “Atlantic Fleet” held the line against America’s enemies.
USS Harry S. Truman underway in the Atlantic on Sept. 5, U.S. Navy Photo
Today, with the high-end threats in the Atlantic Ocean subdued, the Navy has called for posturing “credible combat power” in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. One question I am often asked is if this will result in a diminished role for U.S. naval forces on the Atlantic coast as the Navy turns its attention to the Indo-Pacific region. The answer: Far from it. Our East Coast forces will continue to play a major role in regions beyond the geographic scope of their “Atlantic” posture, taking the lead in contributing to sea control and power projection missions in the Arabian Gulf/Indian Ocean while also performing ballistic missile defense, constabulary, intelligence/surveillance/reconnaissance, and partnership-building missions in the Southern Command, Africa Command and the European Command areas of responsibility.