Tag Archives: Secretary of Defense Mark Esper

After 9 Months of Study, Pentagon's Fleet Architecture Similar to Original Navy Plan

After 9 Months of Study, Pentagon’s Fleet Architecture Similar to Original Navy Plan

Defense Secretary Mark Esper tours the avenger class minesweeper USS Devastator, docked at Naval Support Activity Bahrain on Oct. 28, 2020. DoD Photo

At the beginning of the year, the Navy and Marine Corps sent a new fleet plan to Pentagon leaders that called for relying on smaller ships and unmanned vessels to meet future missions and defeat future adversaries. The Pentagon rejected the plan.

Nine-months later, Pentagon leaders reached the same conclusion: the Navy needed to be more distributed and weighted towards small combatants and unmanned craft.

What did that additional effort really get the sea services? Not much, according to some officials involved in both processes.

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DARPA Aiming to Increase USV Range with Sea Trains Program

DARPA Aiming to Increase USV Range with Sea Trains Program

Sea Hunter, an entirely new class of unmanned sea surface vehicle developed in partnership between the Office of Naval Research (ONR) and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), completed an autonomous sail from San Diego to Hawaii and back—the first ship ever to do so autonomously. US Navy photo.

As the Pentagon prepares for a fight in the vastness of the Indo-Pacific, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is developing a concept it hopes will allow unmanned surface vehicles to travel up to 14,000 nautical miles. Read More

BWXT CEO: Navy’s Next-Generation SSN(X) Attack Boat Will Build Off Columbia Class

BWXT CEO: Navy’s Next-Generation SSN(X) Attack Boat Will Build Off Columbia Class

Virginia-class fast-attack submarine USS Missouri (SSN-780) on May 31, 2018. US Navy Photo

The Navy’s next attack submarine will feature technology in the Columbia-class program and be significantly larger than the current class of the Virginia-class attack submarines, the chief executive of BWX Technologies said on Monday as part of the company’s third-quarter earnings call. Read More

SECNAV Braithwaite Calls for Light Carrier, ‘Joint Strike Frigate’ ; Sounds Alarm Over Chinese Naval Expansion

SECNAV Braithwaite Calls for Light Carrier, ‘Joint Strike Frigate’ ; Sounds Alarm Over Chinese Naval Expansion

Secretary of the Navy Kenneth Braithwaite speaks with U.S. sailors and Marines while visiting HMS Queen Elizabeth at sea off the coast of Flamborough, United Kingdom on Oct. 1, 2020. UK Royal Navy Photo

Navy Secretary Kenneth Braithwaite made a full-throated call for U.S. naval expansion, citing the growing Chinese Navy as the prime driver of the need for a larger fleet. Read More

SECNAV Braithwaite Visits Palau as U.S. Courts More Partners in the Western Pacific

SECNAV Braithwaite Visits Palau as U.S. Courts More Partners in the Western Pacific

USS Benfold (DD-65) is at anchor off Koror, Republic of Palau in 2012. US Navy Photo

Navy Secretary Kenneth Braithwaite visited Palau during a weeklong swing through the Pacific, making him the second high-ranking Defense Department official to visit to the small island nation in the last two months as the Second Island Chain is being eyed to play an even larger role in military plans and operations going forward. Read More

Navy Claims Victories in Modernizing Public Yards While Congress Questions Pace

Navy Claims Victories in Modernizing Public Yards While Congress Questions Pace

USS Boise (SSN 764) arrived at Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Newport News Shipbuilding division to begin its 25-month extended engineering overhaul on June 18, 2018, but ultimately had to return to Naval Station Norfolk to continue awaiting maintenance because there was no room at Newport News for the sub amid two other boats’ maintenance overruns. Huntington Ingalls Industries’ photo.

The Navy is moving into the next phase of a wholesale revision of its ship maintenance infrastructure. Last week, the service announced it had started to digitally map the layout of its centuries-old Norfolk Naval Shipyard as it seeks to bring new technology and a more efficient workflow to the public yards. Read More