Start of Construction

The U.S. Navy’s Arleigh Burke-class (DDG-51) destroyers continue to achieve shipbuilding milestones with start of construction at both shipbuilders, Bath Iron Works (BIW), Bath, Maine, and Huntington Ingalls Industries, Pascagoula, Mississippi.

Bath Iron Works celebrated «Start Fab» for the future USS Harvey C. Barnum Jr. (DDG-124) at a ceremony at the Harding Structural Fabrication Plant
Bath Iron Works celebrated «Start Fab» for the future USS Harvey C. Barnum Jr. (DDG-124) at a ceremony at the Harding Structural Fabrication Plant

On May 17, construction of the future USS Harvey C. Barnum Jr. (DDG-124) began at BIW. The ship’s namesake, Colonel Harvey «Barney» Barnum, Jr. (Ret.), was on hand to officially mark the start of fabrication on the ship.

In Pascagoula, Mississippi, construction of the future USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125) officially began May 7. DDG-125 will be the first Arleigh Burke class destroyer built in the Flight III configuration with improved capability and capacity to perform Anti-Air Warfare (AAW) and Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) in support of the Integrated Air and Missile Defense (IAMD) mission.

These milestones, which signify the first 100 tons of steel being cut, were marked with ceremonies held in the shipyards’ respective fabrication shops.

«This is an exciting time in the DDG-51 program as we celebrate the start of construction on DDG-124 and DDG-125», said Captain Casey Moton, DDG 51 class program manager, Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships. «Both of these ships are named after Medal of Honor recipients and we are proud to honor their legacy with such capable warfighters».

These ships are Aegis baseline 9 (DDG-124) and baseline 10 (DDG-125) IAMD destroyers with significant capabilities against modern air warfare and BMD threats. When operational, these multi-mission surface combatants will serve as integral players in global maritime security, engaging in air, undersea, surface, strike and ballistic missile defense as well as providing increased capabilities in anti-submarine warfare, command and control, and anti-surface warfare.

As one of the Defense Department’s largest acquisition organizations, PEO Ships is responsible for executing the development and procurement of all destroyers, amphibious ships, special mission and support ships, and special warfare craft.

 

Ship Characteristics

Length Overall 510 feet/156 m
Beam – Waterline 59 feet/18 m
Draft 30.5 feet/9.3 m
Displacement – Full Load 9,217 tons/9,363 metric tons
Power Plant 4 General electric LM 2500-30 gas turbines; 2 shafts; 2 CRP (Contra-Rotating) propellers; 100,000 shaft horsepower/75,000 kW
Speed in excess of 30 knots/34.5 mph/55.5 km/h
Range 4,400 NM/8,149 km at 20 knots/23 mph/37 km/h
Crew 380 total: 32 Officers, 27 CPO (Chief Petty Officer), 321 OEM
Surveillance SPY-1D Phased Array Radar and Aegis Combat System (Lockheed Martin); SPS-73(V) Navigation; SPS-67(V)3 Surface Search; 3 SPG-62 Illuminator; SQQ-89(V)6 sonar incorporating SQS-53C hull mounted and SQR-19 towed array sonars used with Mark-116 Mod 7 ASW fire control system
Electronics/Countermeasures SLQ-32(V)3; Mark-53 Mod 0 Decoy System; Mark-234 Decoy System; SLQ-25A Torpedo Decoy; SLQ-39 Surface Decoy; URN-25 TACAN; UPX-29 IFF System; Kollmorgen Mark-46 Mod 1 Electro-Optical Director
Aircraft 2 embarked SH-60 helicopters ASW operations; RAST (Recovery Assist, Secure and Traverse)
Armament 2 Mark-41 Vertical Launching System (VLS) with 90 Standard, Vertical Launch ASROC (Anti-Submarine Rocket) & Tomahawk ASM (Air-to-Surface Missile)/LAM (Loitering Attack Missile); 5-in (127-mm)/54 (62) Mark-45 gun; 2 (1) CIWS (Close-In Weapon System); 2 Mark-32 triple 324-mm torpedo tubes for Mark-46 or Mark-50 ASW torpedos

 

Guided Missile Destroyers Lineup

 

Flight IIA: Technology Insertion

Ship Yard Launched Commissioned Homeport
DDG-116 Thomas Hudner GDBIW 04-01-17
DDG-117 Paul Ignatius HIIIS 11-12-16
DDG-118 Daniel Inouye GDBIW
DDG-119 Delbert D. Black HIIIS 09-08-17
DDG-120 Carl M. Levin GDBIW
DDG-121 Frank E. Peterson Jr. HIIIS
DDG-122 John Basilone GDBIW
DDG-123 Lenah H. Sutcliffe Higbee HIIIS
DDD-124 Harvey C. Barnum Jr. GDBIW

 

The first King

Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company, delivered the first CH-53 King Stallion helicopter to the U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) on May 16, 2018. The aircraft is the first of an expected 200 helicopters for the Marine Corps’ fleet.

Sikorsky Begins CH-53 King Stallion Heavy Lift Helicopter Deliveries to the U.S. Marine Corps
Sikorsky Begins CH-53 King Stallion Heavy Lift Helicopter Deliveries to the U.S. Marine Corps

The CH-53K is the new build replacement for the U.S. Marine Corps’ aging CH-53E Super Stallion fleet. The CH-53E first flew in 1974 and entered service with the USMC in 1981.

«Our first delivery of a CH-53K to the Marine Corps marks the start of a new generation of true heavy lift helicopter deliveries by Sikorsky that bring unsurpassed and expanded capability across the modern battlefield to provide tremendous mission flexibility and efficiency in delivering combat power, humanitarian assistance or disaster relief for those in need», said Dan Schultz, Sikorsky President and former CH-53 pilot. «With 18 additional aircraft in various stages of production already, the entire Sikorsky team, in partnership with our suppliers, is looking forward to additional deliveries to delight our customer».

This first CH53K King Stallion heavy lift helicopter will be stationed at Marine Corps Air Station New River in Jacksonville, North Carolina.

There the helicopter enters into the Supportability Test Plan. U.S. Marines will conduct a logistics assessment on the maintenance, sustainment and overall aviation logistics support of the King Stallion. This assessment also will validate maintenance procedures with Marine Corps maintainers conducting hands-on care/upkeep of the aircraft. The Supportability Test Plan will ensure readiness and support on the flightline when CH-53K helicopters enter into service with the USMC.

Sikorsky expects to deliver its second CH-53K King Stallion helicopter to the USMC in early 2019.

The CH-53K King Stallion test program recently completed the following milestones: maximum weight single-point cargo hook sling load of 36,000 pounds/16,329 kilograms; forward flight speed of over 200 knots/230 mph/370 km/h; 60 degrees angle of bank turns; altitude of 18,500 feet/5,639 meters Mean Sea Level (MSL); 12-degree slope landings and takeoffs; external load auto-jettison; and gunfire testing.

«I am very proud of the work accomplished to deliver the most powerful helicopter ever designed into the hands of our Marines», Lieutenant General Steven Rudder, Deputy Commandant for Aviation, said. «And confident in the teamwork and dedication in this program which will carry us to IOC (Initial Operational Capability) next year».

Sikorsky is preparing its manufacturing facility in Stratford, Connecticut, to house CH-53K King Stallion production beginning this summer.

The heavy lift helicopter made its international debut and showcased its maneuverability and advanced fly-by-wire technology during demonstration flights at the recent ILA Berlin Air Show in Berlin, Germany. For the latest video and photos from the air show please visit our Twitter and Facebook channels.

The CH-53K King Stallion is an all new aircraft, using modern intelligent design. The rugged CH-53K King Stallion helicopter is designed to ensure reliability, low maintenance, high availability and enhanced survivability in the most austere and remote forward operating bases.

 

General Characteristics

Number of Engines 3
Engine Type T408-GE-400
T408 Engine 7,500 shp/5,595 kw
Maximum Gross Weight (Internal Load) 74,000 lbs/33,566 kg
Maximum Gross Weight (External Load) 88,000 lbs/39,916 kg
Cruise Speed 141 knots/162 mph/261 km/h
Range 460 NM/530 miles/852 km
AEO* Service Ceiling 14,380 feet/4,383 m
HIGE** Ceiling (MAGW) 13,630 feet/4,155 m
HOGE*** Ceiling (MAGW) 10,080 feet/3,073 m
Cabin Length 30 feet/9.1 m
Cabin Width 9 feet/2.7 m
Cabin Height 6.5 feet/2.0 m
Cabin Area 264.47 feet2/24.57 m2
Cabin Volume 1,735.36 feet3/49.14 m3

* All Engines Operating

** Hover Ceiling In Ground Effect

*** Hover Ceiling Out of Ground Effect

Keel of Montana

On May 16, 2018, Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) Newport News Shipbuilding division today authenticated the keel of the 21st Virginia-class submarine, USS Montana (SSN-794).

Jacob McNulty (far right) displays the keel authentication plate he welded at today’s ceremony. Also present for the ceremony were (left to right) Commander Mike Delaney, commanding officer of the pre-commissioning unit Montana; Mariah Gladstone, a member of the Blackfeet Nation; former Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, the ship’s sponsor; and Newport News Shipbuilding President Jennifer Boykin (Photo by Matt Hildreth/HII)
Jacob McNulty (far right) displays the keel authentication plate he welded at today’s ceremony. Also present for the ceremony were (left to right) Commander Mike Delaney, commanding officer of the pre-commissioning unit Montana; Mariah Gladstone, a member of the Blackfeet Nation; former Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, the ship’s sponsor; and Newport News Shipbuilding President Jennifer Boykin (Photo by Matt Hildreth/HII)

«This is an important day for us», said Dave Bolcar, Newport News’ vice president of submarine construction. «Not only are we celebrating a milestone in the construction of Montana, we also are recognizing the hard work of the 4,000 shipbuilders who are supporting the construction of newest Virginia-class attack submarine».

In keeping with a U.S. Navy tradition, former Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, the ship’s sponsor, chalked her initials onto a steel plate. Mariah Gladstone, a member of the Blackfeet Nation in Montana, performed a Native American blessing.

«It’s a true honor to meet the commander, crew and shipbuilders who are hard at work shaping this amazing submarine to serve our nation», Jewell said. «We celebrate the tradition of the keel laying and look forward to blessing her, christening her and ensuring that the natural beauty, rich culture and spirit of the great state of Montana accompany the ship and crew throughout her lifetime».

Jacob McNulty, a welder at Newport News who was born in Montana, traced Jewell’s inscription on the plate, which signified that the keel of Montana is «truly and fairly laid». The steel plate will be permanently affixed to the submarine.

«The keel laying marks the first milestone for the crew in the construction process of Montana», said Commander Mike Delaney, commanding officer of the pre-commissioning unit. «We are excited to begin this journey and bring the Montana to life over the next few years».

Construction of Montana began in May 2015. The boat is approximately 46 percent complete and is expected to be delivered in late 2020. Two of its crew members hail from the state of Montana.

Jacob McNulty welds Sally Jewell’s initials onto the keel authentication plate of the submarine USS Montana (SSN-794) (Photo by Matt Hildreth/HII)
Jacob McNulty welds Sally Jewell’s initials onto the keel authentication plate of the submarine USS Montana (SSN-794) (Photo by Matt Hildreth/HII)

 

General Characteristics

Builder General Dynamics Electric Boat Division and Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc. – Newport News Shipbuilding
Date Deployed October 3, 2004
Propulsion One GE PWR S9G* nuclear reactor, two turbines, one shaft; 40,000 hp/30 MW
Length 377 feet/114.8 m
Beam 33 feet/10.0584 m
Hull Diameter 34 feet/10.3632 m
Displacement Approximately 7,800 tons/7,925 metric tons submerged
Speed 25+ knots/28+ mph/46.3+ km/h
Diving Depth 800+ feet/244+ m
Crew 132: 15 officers; 117 enlisted
Armament: Tomahawk missiles Two 87-in/2.2 m Virginia Payload Tubes (VPTs), each capable of launching 6 Tomahawk cruise missiles
Armament: MK-48 ADCAP (Advanced Capability) Mod 7 heavyweight torpedoes 4 torpedo tubes
Weapons MK-60 CAPTOR (Encapsulated Torpedo) mines, advanced mobile mines and UUVs (Unmanned Underwater Vehicles)

* – Knolls Atomic Power Laboratories

 

Nuclear Submarine Lineup

 

Block IV

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-792 Vermont EB Under Construction
SSN-793 Oregon EB Under Construction
SSN-794 Montana NNS Under Construction
SSN-795 Hyman G. Rickover EB Under Construction
SSN-796 New Jersey NNS On Order
SSN-797 Iowa EB On Order
SSN-798 Massachusetts NNS On Order
SSN-799 Idaho EB On Order
SSN-800 Arkansas NNS On Order
SSN-801 Utah EB On Order

 

7th Astute submarine

On May 14, Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson announced the Ministry of Defence is investing a massive £2.5 billion in boosting Britain’s submarine building projects.

HMS Agincourt (S125) officially named
HMS Agincourt (S125) officially named

Speaking at BAE Systems’ shipyard in Barrow-in-Furness Cumbria, the home of British submarine construction, he announced £960 million worth of contracts have been signed to ramp up the next phase of construction for the UK’s four nuclear-armed Dreadnought submarines.

He also announced that the Ministry of Defence has signed a £1.5 billion contract to build a seventh Astute hunter-killer submarine for the Royal Navy, before revealing that the attack boat will be called HMS Agincourt (S125). It will be the sixth vessel in the Royal Navy to be named after the Battle of Agincourt of 1415.

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said: «This multi-billion-pound investment in our nuclear submarines shows our unwavering commitment to keeping the UK safe and secure from intensifying threats. Agincourt will complete the Royal Navy’s seven-strong fleet of hunter-killer attack subs, the most powerful to ever enter British service, whilst our nuclear deterrent is the ultimate defence against the most extreme dangers we could possibly face. Not only is this a massive boost for our armed forces, but it’s huge for Barrow, the heart of sub-building in this country. Today’s news supports 8,000 BAE Systems’ submarine jobs, as well as thousands more in the supply chain, protecting prosperity and providing opportunity right across the country».

The multi-billion-pound announcements will help sustain around 8,000 jobs in BAE Systems’ submarine business, as well as thousands more across the UK submarine supply chain.

The Defence Secretary made the announcements during a ceremony, in which also opened a new £100 million submarine construction building in the Cumbria factory.

In front of a gathered workforce of employees and apprentices, he unveiled a plaque to mark the opening of the state-of-the-art Central Yard Facility building which, at 26,700 metres squared, is equivalent in size to 21 Olympic-sized swimming pools and, at 45 metres high, is as tall as ten double-decker buses.

It will be used to outfit and test each section of the new Dreadnought submarines. The Dreadnought Submarine Programme will now move into its second phase. This will continue the design and build of the first Dreadnought submarine and commence the build of the second, including furthering the design and manufacture of the nuclear propulsion power plant.

This phase has commenced with contracts signed for £900 million and £60 million with BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce respectively.

Elsewhere, Defence Minister Guto Bebb will be in Derby today – with the Rolls-Royce contract seeing over 700 jobs sustained at their factory in the city.

Defence Minister Guto Bebb said: «The Dreadnought Programme is a true national endeavour, furthering our world-class nuclear capability. Today’s announcement includes a £60m contract for Rolls-Royce, supporting over 700 jobs here in Derby as the factory continues to make the reactors that will power our state-of-the-art Dreadnought subs into the 2060s. I’d like to thank everyone at Rolls-Royce in Derby for their contribution to maintaining our Continuous at Sea Deterrent, protecting us against the most serious threats to our way of life, every hour of every day».

The Submarine Delivery Agency, which was established last month, will project manage the construction of future Royal Navy submarines, and support those in-service, working with Navy Command and the newly established Defence Nuclear Organisation.

Chief Executive Officer of the Submarine Delivery Agency, Ian Booth said: «The incredibly complex Astute and Dreadnought programmes maximise the tremendously skilled and experienced workforce we have across the UK submarine business. Both programmes require commitment and close collaboration with our industrial partners across the supply chain and in the newly formed Dreadnought Alliance, which will deliver a step change in how we will work together to efficiently and effectively deliver nuclear submarines for the Royal Navy».

Cliff Robson, BAE Systems Submarines Managing Director, said: «Securing this latest funding for our submarines programmes is excellent news for BAE Systems and the 8,700 employees in our Submarines business, as well as our local community in Barrow and the thousands of people across our UK supply chain who help deliver these nationally important programmes for the Royal Navy. We continue to make progress on these highly complex and technical programmes and today’s announcements will allow us to move forward with greater certainty and stability».

Steve Dearden, President-Submarines for Rolls-Royce said: «The Dreadnought class programme is a vital, national endeavour and we are immensely proud of the role that we play as custodian of the naval nuclear propulsion capability in the UK. Dreadnought will be powered by the next generation Naval Pressurised Water Reactor technology, which will be simpler, require 30% less maintenance and have reduced in-service costs. Today’s delivery phase II announcement allows us to move from design through to manufacture and the delivery of major components that are essential for the submarine build timeline».

Keel laying

The keel of the future USS Daniel Inouye (DDG-118) was ceremoniously laid on May 14 at the Bath Iron Works (BIW) shipyard.

Irene Hirano Inouye, wife of the late senator, is the ship’s sponsor. Assisted by Frank Wood, a 31-year Bath Iron Works welder, the sponsor authenticated the laying of the keel by striking welding arcs onto a special steel plate containing her initials
Irene Hirano Inouye, wife of the late senator, is the ship’s sponsor. Assisted by Frank Wood, a 31-year Bath Iron Works welder, the sponsor authenticated the laying of the keel by striking welding arcs onto a special steel plate containing her initials

Irene Hirano Inouye, the ship’s sponsor and wife of the late Senator Daniel Inouye, was in attendance to authenticate the keel. During the ceremony, the authenticators etched their initials into the keel plate to symbolically recognize the joining of modular components and the ceremonial beginning of the ship.

«We are honored to have Mrs. Hirano Inouye authenticate the keel of the future USS Daniel Inouye», said Captain Casey Moton, DDG-51 class program manager, Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships. «We wish the men and women who sail this exceptionally capable ship the same courageous spirit the late Senator Inouye embodied».

The ship’s namesake, Daniel Inouye, served as a United States Senator from Hawaii from 1963 until his death in 2012. Senator Inouye received the Medal of Honor for his heroism while serving with the 442nd Infantry Regiment in Italy during World War II. During an assault on April 21, 1945, he lost his right arm but continued to fight until the Regiment’s position was secured.

USS Daniel Inouye (DDG-118) will be built in the Flight IIA configuration with the Aegis Baseline 9 Combat System which includes Integrated Air and Missile Defense capability. This system delivers quick reaction time, high firepower, and increased electronic countermeasures capability for Anti-Air Warfare.

These multi-mission surface combatants serve as integral assets in global maritime security, engaging in air, undersea, surface, strike and ballistic missile defense, as well as providing increased capabilities in anti-submarine warfare, command and control, and anti-surface warfare.

BIW is also currently in production on the future destroyers USS Carl M. Levin (DDG-120), USS John Basilone (DDG-122), USS Harvey C. Barnum (DDG-124) – with start of construction on DDG-124 set to ceremoniously begin later this week – as well as the future Zumwalt class destroyer, USS Lyndon B. Johnson (DDG-1002).

As one of the Defense Department’s largest acquisition organizations, PEO Ships is responsible for executing the development and procurement of all destroyers, amphibious ships, special mission and support ships, and special warfare craft.

 

Ship Characteristics

Length Overall 510 feet/156 m
Beam – Waterline 59 feet/18 m
Draft 30.5 feet/9.3 m
Displacement – Full Load 9,217 tons/9,363 metric tons
Power Plant 4 General electric LM 2500-30 gas turbines; 2 shafts; 2 CRP (Contra-Rotating) propellers; 100,000 shaft horsepower/75,000 kW
Speed in excess of 30 knots/34.5 mph/55.5 km/h
Range 4,400 NM/8,149 km at 20 knots/23 mph/37 km/h
Crew 380 total: 32 Officers, 27 CPO (Chief Petty Officer), 321 OEM
Surveillance SPY-1D Phased Array Radar and Aegis Combat System (Lockheed Martin); SPS-73(V) Navigation; SPS-67(V)3 Surface Search; 3 SPG-62 Illuminator; SQQ-89(V)6 sonar incorporating SQS-53C hull mounted and SQR-19 towed array sonars used with Mark-116 Mod 7 ASW fire control system
Electronics/Countermeasures SLQ-32(V)3; Mark-53 Mod 0 Decoy System; Mark-234 Decoy System; SLQ-25A Torpedo Decoy; SLQ-39 Surface Decoy; URN-25 TACAN; UPX-29 IFF System; Kollmorgen Mark-46 Mod 1 Electro-Optical Director
Aircraft 2 embarked SH-60 helicopters ASW operations; RAST (Recovery Assist, Secure and Traverse)
Armament 2 Mark-41 Vertical Launching System (VLS) with 90 Standard, Vertical Launch ASROC (Anti-Submarine Rocket) & Tomahawk ASM (Air-to-Surface Missile)/LAM (Loitering Attack Missile); 5-in (127-mm)/54 (62) Mark-45 gun; 2 (1) CIWS (Close-In Weapon System); 2 Mark-32 triple 324-mm torpedo tubes for Mark-46 or Mark-50 ASW torpedos

 

Guided Missile Destroyers Lineup

 

Flight IIA: Technology Insertion

Ship Yard Launched Commissioned Homeport
DDG-116 Thomas Hudner GDBIW 04-01-17
DDG-117 Paul Ignatius HIIIS 11-12-16
DDG-118 Daniel Inouye GDBIW
DDG-119 Delbert D. Black HIIIS 09-08-17
DDG-120 Carl M. Levin GDBIW
DDG-121 Frank E. Peterson Jr. HIIIS
DDG-122 John Basilone GDBIW
DDG-123 Lenah H. Sutcliffe Higbee HIIIS

 

Korea’s Assault Ship

According to Defense-aerospace.com, South Korea’s new 14,500-ton amphibious assault ship made its public debut Monday, May 14, 2018, boasting improved combat and radar systems using the country’s own technology, the state arms agency said.

This photo provided by the Defense Acquisition Program Administration shows South Korea’s new 14,500-ton amphibious assault ship, the Marado
This photo provided by the Defense Acquisition Program Administration shows South Korea’s new 14,500-ton amphibious assault ship, the Marado

Defense Minister Song Young-moo plans to host the launch ceremony for the Marado ship at the shipyard of Hanjin Heavy Industries & Construction Co. in Busan in the afternoon, according to the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA).

The minister’s wife Koo Ja-jeong is scheduled to cut the rope tethering the vessel with a hand axe in a symbolic tradition for the ceremonial launch of a naval ship.

Named after the nation’s southernmost island, it will be the South Korean Navy’s second large-scale transport ship after the Dokdo of the same class.

It can sail at a maximum speed of 23 knots/26.5 mph/41 km/h with some 300 crew members aboard.

The Marado, 199 meters/653 feet long and 31 meters/102 feet wide, is capable of carrying more than 700 troops, armored vehicles, high-speed amphibious boats and helicopters.

Code-named LPH-6112, the Marado is also equipped with advanced radar and combat devices, including anti-ship guided missiles produced by South Korea, according to the DAPA. It has a 20-mm Phalanx close-in weapons system as well, while the Dokdo is installed with the 30-mm Goalkeeper gun. LPH stands for landing platform helicopter.

The Marado will be delivered to the Navy in late 2020 after trial operations, the DAPA said. Besides combat missions, the vessel will be used to support disaster rescue or international peacekeeping operations, it added.

Also attending the ceremony are Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Um Hyun-seong, Marine Corps Commandant Lieutenant General Jun Jin-goo and around 200 other dignitaries.

Two South Korean civilians – Sohn Yang-young and Lee Kyung-pil – will join the event. They were born on the Meredith Victory, a U.S. ship used in the 1950 evacuation of more than 14,000 war refugees in Korea.

Demonstration Flights

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) today announced the first flight of the Guardian Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) in Japan during an opening ceremony on Iki Island. The demonstration flights, taking place over the next three weeks, intend to promote the civil and scientific applications of the RPA.

GA-ASI Begins Demonstration Flights in Japan
GA-ASI Begins Demonstration Flights in Japan

«We thank the Mayor of Iki and the many other public and private stakeholders for their making this demonstration possible», said Linden Blue, CEO GA-ASI. «We believe that these flights of long-endurance RPAs in Japan’s maritime environment will provide valuable information, and we look forward to reviewing the important data gathered from these flights».

Mayor Shirakawa provided a statement, which said: «We are delighted to host the RPA flight demonstration on our island of Iki. The demonstration is an important milestone for the many peaceful uses of RPAs, including maritime disaster security and maritime resource management. Iki is located near the boundaries of Japan, so surveillance capabilities are an important matter for us. Furthermore, holding the nation’s first demonstration of this kind has great economic significance for our island. I thank the national government’s ministries and agencies and the many other public and private stakeholders for their cooperation».

The Guardian will collect data for scientific research that will be shared across multiple government agencies, while operating from the island of Iki, in Japan’s Nagasaki Prefecture.

This is the first demonstration of a long endurance RPA by a private company in Japan. The aircraft’s sensors include a long-range maritime surface-search radar, stabilized optical and infrared video cameras, and an active collision-avoidance system, which includes a short range air-to-air radar. This configuration is similar to that operated by the U.S. Department of Homeland security over the maritime approaches to the U.S.

For demonstration purposes, the Guardian flights will consist of approximately 10 five-hour sorties over a three-week period, originating out of Iki Airport; however, this aircraft configuration is capable of more than 20 hours endurance in a single sortie. The Guardian system will demonstrate various missions, including:

  • Meteorological, disaster-relief and oceanic observations;
  • Marine accidents and rescue support;
  • Air space management and support of communications.

GA-ASI is leading the demonstrations in cooperation with Iki Airport personnel and Japanese national authorities. The sensor data collected by Guardian will be provided to scientific research institutions, and flight data will be given to airspace management organizations to help establish procedures for using RPA systems in national and international civil airspace.

GA-ASI has sent its own team of experienced RPA pilots, sensor operators, and maintenance personnel to Japan to ensure safe operations during all phases of the demonstration. The demonstration is funded by GA-ASI and the equipment used belongs to the company.

Keel laying ceremony

The U.S. Navy held a keel laying ceremony for the Virginia-class submarine Pre-Commissioning Unit Hyman G. Rickover (SSN-795) at General Dynamics Electric Boat, May 11.

U.S. Navy & GDEB Laid Keel of Future USS Hyman G. Rickover (SSN-795)
U.S. Navy & GDEB Laid Keel of Future USS Hyman G. Rickover (SSN-795)

The initials of the submarine’s sponsor, Darleen Greenert, were welded onto a steel plate that will be permanently affixed to the submarine. She is the wife of former Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Jonathan Greenert (retired).

Admiral Frank Caldwell, Jr., director of the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program, stated, «Admiral Rickover’s gift to our Nation’s defense – safe, reliable, and militarily superior naval nuclear propulsion – is as vital to our warfighting edge today as it was at the beginning of the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program 70 years ago. The U.S. Navy and our nation are proud to honor his achievements and legacy with this submarine».

The submarine began construction on September 30, 2015 and is on track to continue the Virginia-class program’s trend of delivering quality submarines within budget and ready for tasking by the fleet.

This will be the second submarine to be named after Admiral Hyman G. Rickover to honor the pioneer of the nuclear navy. The first submarine named for the admiral was the Los Angeles-Class submarine USS Hyman G. Rickover (SSN-709), which served from 1984 to 2006.

Admiral Rickover served for 63 years on active duty service, making him the longest serving member of the U.S. armed forces in history. In the late 1940’s, Admiral Rickover was made director of the Naval Reactors Branch of the Bureau of Ships and he subsequently led the efforts to develop what would become the USS Nautilus, the world’s first nuclear-powered submarine. Admiral Rickover also established and enforced strict safety standards, leading to the U.S. Navy’s safety record of over 162,000,000 miles safely steamed on nuclear power.

Other Virginia-class milestones this year include the commissioning of the USS Indiana (SSN-789) and the combined keel laying and christening of USS Vermont (SSN-792), both currently projected to occur in the fall.

This next-generation attack submarine provides the U.S. Navy with the capabilities required to maintain the nation’s undersea superiority well into the 21st century.

Virginia-class submarines are built to operate in the world’s littoral and deep waters while conducting anti-submarine warfare; anti-surface ship warfare; strike warfare; special operation forces support; intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; and mine warfare missions. Their inherent stealth, endurance, mobility and firepower directly enable them to support five of the six maritime strategy core capabilities-sea control, power projection, forward presence, maritime security, and deterrence.

Badge of the future Virginia-Class submarine USS Hyman G. Rickover (SSN-795)
Badge of the future Virginia-Class submarine USS Hyman G. Rickover (SSN-795)

 

General Characteristics

Builder General Dynamics Electric Boat Division and Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc. – Newport News Shipbuilding
Date Deployed October 3, 2004
Propulsion One GE PWR S9G* nuclear reactor, two turbines, one shaft; 40,000 hp/30 MW
Length 377 feet/114.8 m
Beam 33 feet/10.0584 m
Hull Diameter 34 feet/10.3632 m
Displacement Approximately 7,800 tons/7,925 metric tons submerged
Speed 25+ knots/28+ mph/46.3+ km/h
Diving Depth 800+ feet/244+ m
Crew 132: 15 officers; 117 enlisted
Armament: Tomahawk missiles Two 87-in/2.2 m Virginia Payload Tubes (VPTs), each capable of launching 6 Tomahawk cruise missiles
Armament: MK-48 ADCAP (Advanced Capability) Mod 7 heavyweight torpedoes 4 torpedo tubes
Weapons MK-60 CAPTOR (Encapsulated Torpedo) mines, advanced mobile mines and UUVs (Unmanned Underwater Vehicles)

* – Knolls Atomic Power Laboratories

 

Nuclear Submarine Lineup

 

Block IV

Ship Yard Christening Commissioned Homeport
SSN-792 Vermont EB Under Construction
SSN-793 Oregon EB Under Construction
SSN-794 Montana NNS Under Construction
SSN-795 Hyman G. Rickover EB On Order
SSN-796 New Jersey NNS On Order
SSN-797 Iowa EB On Order
SSN-798 Massachusetts NNS On Order
SSN-799 Idaho EB On Order
SSN-800 Arkansas NNS On Order
SSN-801 Utah EB On Order

 

Rocket Production

Lockheed Martin received an $828 million not-to-exceed contract from the U.S. Army for Lot 13 production of Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) rockets and associated equipment.

Lockheed Martin received a $828 million not-to-exceed contract from the U.S. Army for Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System rockets and associated equipment
Lockheed Martin received a $828 million not-to-exceed contract from the U.S. Army for Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System rockets and associated equipment

The contract calls for the production of GMLRS Alternative Warhead (AW) rockets, GMLRS Unitary rockets, Reduced-Range Practice Rockets (RRPRs) and integrated logistics support for the U.S. Army as well as GMLRS rounds for a number of international customers. Work will be performed at the Lockheed Martin facilities in Dallas and at the company’s Precision Fires Center of Excellence in Camden, Ark.

«The GMLRS round continues to perform exceptionally well for our customers», said Gaylia Campbell, vice president of Precision Fires and Combat Maneuver Systems at Lockheed Martin. «And we are always executing continuous improvement initiatives to enhance performance, range and affordability of these critical rounds to assure they remain the preferred precision-strike option for our warfighters».

GMLRS is an all-weather rocket designed for fast deployment that delivers precision strike beyond the reach of most conventional weapons. The GMLRS AW was the first munition developed to service area targets without the effects of unexploded ordinance, complying with the Department of Defense (DoD) cluster munitions policy. GMLRS Unitary rockets greatly exceed the required combat reliability rate and have established a reputation for affordability. The RRPR allows users to train with realistic, full-motored rockets with limited flight range, making them ideal for smaller testing ranges.

In combat operations, each GMLRS rocket is packaged in a MLRS launch pod and is fired from the Lockheed Martin High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) or M270 family of launchers. For more than 40 years, Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control has been the leading designer and manufacturer of long-range, surface-to-surface precision strike solutions, providing highly reliable, combat-proven systems like MLRS, HIMARS, Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) and GMLRS to domestic and international customers.

Flight III

Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) Ingalls Shipbuilding division officially started fabrication of the Arleigh Burke-class (DDG-51) destroyer USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125) on May 07, 2018. The start of fabrication signifies the first 100 tons of steel have been cut.

Shipbuilders in Ingalls' Steel Fabrication Shop, from left, Paul Perry, Donald Morrison, Queena Myles and Paul Bosarge, celebrate Start of Fabrication for USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125) on May 7, 2018 (Photo by Shane Scara/HII)
Shipbuilders in Ingalls’ Steel Fabrication Shop, from left, Paul Perry, Donald Morrison, Queena Myles and Paul Bosarge, celebrate Start of Fabrication for USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125) on May 7, 2018 (Photo by Shane Scara/HII)

«The start of fabrication on a new destroyer is always exciting», Ingalls’ DDG-51 program manager George Nungesser said. «DDG-125 is no exception. Our shipbuilders have delivered 30 of these ships to the U.S. Navy and back-to-back building has allowed them to gain experience and talent that is unmatched in our industry. They are eager to use their skillset to incorporate the Navy’s Flight III modifications into DDG-125 and provide the Navy with yet another state-of-the-art ship».

USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125) will be the first «Flight III» ship in the Arleigh Burke- class of destroyers. Flight III will incorporate a new Advanced Missile Defense Radar (AMDR) that will replace the existing SPY-1 radar installed on the previous DDG-51 ships.

This is the first ship named to honor Captain Jack H. Lucas, who, at the age of 14, forged his mother’s signature to join the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves during World War II. Lucas, then a private first class in the Marine Corps, turned 17 just five days before the U.S. invasion of Iwo Jima and stowed away on USS Deuel (APA-160) to fight in the campaign. During a close firefight with Japanese forces, Lucas saved the lives of three fellow Marines when, after two enemy hand-grenades were thrown into a U.S. trench, he placed himself on one grenade while simultaneously pulling the other under his body. One of the grenades did not explode; the other exploded but only injured Lucas.

Lucas is the youngest Marine and the youngest service member in World War II to receive the Medal of Honor.

Jack H. Lucas is the fifth of five Arleigh Burke-class destroyers HII was awarded in June 2013. The five-ship contract, part of a multi-year procurement in the DDG-51 program, allows Ingalls to build ships more efficiently by buying bulk material and moving the skilled workforce from ship to ship.

Ingalls has delivered 30 Arleigh Burke-class destroyers to the U.S. Navy. Other destroyers currently under construction at Ingalls include, USS Paul Ignatius (DDG-117), USS Delbert D. Black (DDG-119), USS Frank E. Petersen Jr. (DDG-121) and USS Lenah H. Sutcliffe Higbee (DDG-123).

Arleigh Burke-class destroyers are highly capable, multi-mission ships and can conduct a variety of operations, from peacetime presence and crisis management to sea control and power projection, all in support of the United States’ military strategy. The guided missile destroyers are capable of simultaneously fighting air, surface and subsurface battles. The ship contains myriad offensive and defensive weapons designed to support maritime defense needs well into the 21st century.

 

Ship Characteristics

Length Overall 510 feet/156 m
Beam – Waterline 59 feet/18 m
Draft 30.5 feet/9.3 m
Displacement – Full Load 9,217 tons/9,363 metric tons
Power Plant 4 General electric LM 2500-30 gas turbines; 2 shafts; 2 CRP (Contra-Rotating) propellers; 100,000 shaft horsepower/75,000 kW
Speed in excess of 30 knots/34.5 mph/55.5 km/h
Range 4,400 NM/8,149 km at 20 knots/23 mph/37 km/h
Crew 380 total: 32 Officers, 27 CPO (Chief Petty Officer), 321 OEM
Surveillance AN/SPY-6 Air and Missile Defense Radar (Raytheon Company) and Aegis Combat System (Lockheed Martin); SPS-73(V) Navigation; SPS-67(V)3 Surface Search; 3 SPG-62 Illuminator; SQQ-89(V)6 sonar incorporating SQS-53C hull mounted and SQR-19 towed array sonars used with Mark-116 Mod 7 ASW fire control system
Electronics/Countermeasures SLQ-32(V)3; Mark-53 Mod 0 Decoy System; Mark-234 Decoy System; SLQ-25A Torpedo Decoy; SLQ-39 Surface Decoy; URN-25 TACAN; UPX-29 IFF System; Kollmorgen Mark-46 Mod 1 Electro-Optical Director
Aircraft 2 embarked SH-60 helicopters ASW operations; RAST (Recovery Assist, Secure and Traverse)
Armament 2 Mark-41 Vertical Launching System (VLS) with 90 Standard, Vertical Launch ASROC (Anti-Submarine Rocket) & Tomahawk ASM (Air-to-Surface Missile)/LAM (Loitering Attack Missile); 5-in (127-mm)/54 (62) Mark-45 gun; 2 (1) CIWS (Close-In Weapon System); 2 Mark-32 triple 324-mm torpedo tubes for Mark-46 or Mark-50 ASW torpedos

 

Guided Missile Destroyers Lineup

 

Flight III

Ship Yard Launched Commissioned Homeport
DDG-125 Jack H. Lucas HIIIS
DDG-126 Louis H. Wilson, Jr. GDBIW