The U.S. Navy and General Dynamics (GD) Bath Iron Works (BIW) marked the start of fabrication for the future USS Quentin Walsh (DDG-132) with a ceremony at BIW’s Structural Fabrication Facility in East Brunswick, Maine, November 16.
USS Quentin Walsh (DDG-132) will be a DDG-51 Flight III guided missile destroyer centered on the AN/SPY-6(V)1 Air and Missile Defense Radar (AMDR) and will incorporate upgrades to the electrical power and cooling capacity plus additional associated changes to provide greatly enhanced warfighting capability to the fleet. The Flight III baseline begins with DDGs 125-126 and continues with USS Ted Stevens (DDG-128) and follow on ships.
The ship is named for Capt. Quentin R. Walsh, a United States Coast Guard officer who earned the Navy Cross during World War II.
«We are engaged in a long-term competition and the future USS Quentin Walsh will provide the strategic capabilities needed to support the fleet for decades to come», said Captain Seth Miller, DDG 51 program manager, Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships. «Captain Walsh provided selfless service to his country and this warship will help to continue his honorable legacy».
BIW is also in production on the future USS Carl M. Levin (DDG-120), USS John Basilone (DDG-122), USS Harvey C. Barnum Jr. (DDG-124), USS Patrick Gallagher (DDG-127), USS Louis H. Wilson Jr. (DDG-126) and USS William Charette (DDG-130).
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, boats and craft.
The CERES space system (Capacité de Renseignement Electromagnétique Spatiale or Space-based Signal Intelligence Capability) satellites designed and built by Airbus Defence and Space and Thales for the French Armament General Directorate (DGA) have been successfully launched from the European spaceport in French Guiana, on-board a Vega launcher.
«We are ready to go with the next generation of space surveillance capability for France: CERES! Entrusting Airbus with the construction and full space system responsibility is a ringing endorsement of our expertise and the quality of our technology, acquired in particular from the ESSAIM and ELISA demonstrators», said Jean Marc Nasr, Head of Space Systems at Airbus. «The three CERES satellites will provide France with its first satellite system for signal intelligence, thus confirming our ability to act as prime contractor for French space-based intelligence systems», he continued.
CERES is designed to detect and geo-locate electromagnetic signals from radio communication systems and radars from areas where surface sensors cannot reach. From its low Earth orbit, CERES is free from airspace overflight constraints and can operate in all types of weather. The system will provide in-depth information to support military operations for the French Armed Forces, thus improving situational awareness.
«CERES will complete the French strategic and tactical defence intelligence capability with its first signal intelligence (SIGINT) satellite system. DGA trusts Thales to be in charge of the CERES end-to-end mission performance, for which we rely on our experience of more than 20 years in space-based SIGINT, especially with ESSAIM and ELISA, our unique know-how in satellite payloads and user ground segments, and our wide knowledge in SIGINT and electronic warfare in all environments», said Philippe Duhamel, Executive Vice-President, Defence Mission Systems at Thales.
The system includes the space segment consisting of a swarm of three identical satellites carrying the SIGINT payload, as well as the user and ground control segments.
Airbus Defence and Space and Thales are co-contractors for the full end-to-end system. Airbus is responsible for the global system integration and the space segment comprising the three satellites, while Thales is responsible for full mission chain and system performance, going from on-board payload to user ground segment. In addition, Thales Alenia Space acted as a subcontractor to Airbus in supplying the satellites’ platforms. The French space agency, CNES, as assisting partner to the DGA, procured the launch services and the ground control segment.
CERES draws on Airbus and Thales’ experience acquired from the ESSAIM (communications intelligence) and ELISA (electronic intelligence) micro-satellite demonstrators launched in 2004 and 2011 respectively. The technical and operational lessons learnt from these systems were key to enabling the very high performance in electromagnetic detection and compatibility, demanded by this mission.
According to Navy Recognition, South Korea held a ceremony launching a new frigate ROKS Cheonan (FFG-826) named after a warship torpedoed by North Korea in 2010, the Navy and state arms procurement agency said, Cheonan, took place at the shipyard of Hyundai Heavy Industries Co. in Ulsan.
The Daegu-class frigate is a class of guided-missile frigates of the Republic of Korea Navy (ROKN). The Daegu-class is based on the preceding Incheon-class frigate and has otherwise been referred to as an Incheon-class batch II, or FFG-II.
Eight Daegu-class ships are planned, with the final goal of 20-22 frigates (of all types) in the ROKN. The Daegu-class frigates are to be built by Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) and Hyundai Heavy Industries.
The Daegu-class is the first Korean warship to be equipped with a combined diesel-electric or gas (CODLOG) propulsion system. The propulsion system of the ROKN ships has a gas turbine direct drive and four high-speed diesel generators driving two Leonardo DRS permanent magnet electric motors.
The Daegu-class frigate is armed with one 5-inch (127-mm)/L62 caliber Mk-45 Mod 4 naval gun, one 20-mm Phalanx CIWS (Close-In Weapon System), two triple torpedo tubes for K745 Blue Shark torpedo, eight SSM-700K Haeseong Anti-ship Missile and 16-cell K-VLS (Vertical Launching System) able to launch Haegung K-SAAM surface-to-air missile, Haeryong VL-Tactical anti-ship cruise Missiles and K-ASROC Red Shark anti-submarine missile.
Northrop Grumman Corporation recently completed the critical design review of the Hypersonic and Ballistic Tracking Space Sensor (HBTSS) prototype for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA). The review establishes the company’s technical approach for precise, timely sensor coverage to defeat ballistic and hypersonic missiles.
HBTSS satellites will provide continuous tracking and handoff to enable targeting of enemy missiles launched from land, sea or air. They are a critical part of the Overhead Persistent Infrared (OPIR) multi-layered constellation of satellites, which can sense heat signatures to detect and track missiles from their earliest stages of launch through interception.
«When it comes to national safety, there’s no room for error», said Sarah Willoughby, vice president, OPIR and geospatial systems, Northrop Grumman. «This critical design review puts Northrop Grumman on track to deliver a vital component of our missile defense architecture to keep the U.S. and its allies safe against hypersonic threats».
HBTSS satellites are also designed to track threats with near global reach when prompted by other OPIR systems, well before they come into view of U.S. ground-based defenses.
Northrop Grumman received a $153 million contract from the MDA earlier this year for the Phase IIB portion of the HBTSS program and is on schedule to deliver the HBTSS prototype in 2023. After the HBTSS prototype is delivered, the company will conduct an on-orbit test to demonstrate its ability to continuously track and rapidly process its observations of hypersonic threats, as well as its ability to effectively hand off the information so the missile is intercepted.
Northrop Grumman is a technology company, focused on global security and human discovery. Our pioneering solutions equip our customers with capabilities they need to connect, advance and protect the U.S. and its allies. Driven by a shared purpose to solve our customers’ toughest problems, our 90,000 employees define possible every day.
According to information published by United News of India on November 9, 2021, the fourth Scorpene class submarine, which has been named INS Vela (S-24) was delivered to the Indian Navy.
The Scorpene-class submarines are 2000 tons conventional-propulsion submarines designed and developed by Naval Group for all types of mission, such as surface vessel warfare, anti-submarine warfare, long-range strikes, special operations, or intelligence gathering.
The class has two diesel generation sets providing 1,250 kW/1,676 hp of power. At the top of the hull immediately above the diesel generator sets is a Dutch Breach machinery shipping hatch. The submarine has an elastically supported 2,900 kW/3,889 hp electronic engine.
The submarines can carry 18 torpedoes and missiles or 30 mines. It is equipped with six bow-located 21-inch/533-mm torpedo tubes providing salvo launch capability. Positive discharge launching is by an air turbine pump. She can launch anti-ship and anti-submarine torpedoes, as well as anti-surface missiles. The handling and loading of weapons are automated.
Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) on November 13, 2021 christened pre-commissioning unit New Jersey (SSN-796) at the company’s Newport News Shipbuilding division.
«The christening is a Navy and shipbuilder tradition that celebrates the hard work and dedication of the women and men who are building this magnificent submarine, readying her for the next phase of construction, which includes launch, testing, sea trials and delivery to the Navy», said Jennifer Boykin, president of Newport News Shipbuilding. «We commemorate these American builders during a challenging time in our nation’s history».
«When New Jersey joins the Navy’s fleet, she will deliver firepower for freedom, taking with her the skill of her shipbuilders, the spirit of her sponsor, the courage of her commander and crew and the pride of her fellow New Jerseyans», Boykin added. «These characteristics, united, forge a strong national defense that defines America».
Susan DiMarco, who is a New Jersey resident, retired dentist and wife of former Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson, serves as the ship’s sponsor and performed the traditional honor of breaking a bottle of American sparkling wine across the submarine’s bow during the ceremony.
«As citizens today, we are more divided and disconnected from one another than at any time in our last 50 years, but the efforts that went into building New Jersey say otherwise», DiMarco said. «In order to complete this great ship, there must have been vital partnership and purpose. As a country, we are cooperative, generous and tenacious, and we can work together on exceptional ideas».
The ceremony took place outside of Newport News Shipbuilding’s Module Outfitting Facility and was attended by more than 1,800 guests, including Newport News Shipbuilding employees who are building New Jersey, members of the submarine’s crew, Navy personnel and other government officials, including Jeh Johnson.
U.S. Representative Bobby Scott, of Virginia, and U.S. Representative Donald Norcross, of New Jersey, both delivered remarks. Other speakers included New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy; Jay Stefany, acting assistant secretary of the Navy for research, development and acquisition; Vice Admiral Johnny Wolfe Jr., director of the Navy’s strategic systems programs; and Kevin Graney, president of General Dynamics Electric Boat.
Ceremony participants included U.S. Representative Elaine Luria, of Virginia; Captain Andrew P. Johnson, commanding officer of Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Conversion and Repair, Newport News; and Commander Carlos Otero, the ship’s prospective commanding officer.
Retired U.S. Navy Admiral Michael Mullen, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and former chief of naval operations, provided the keynote address.
«Today is a day of gratitude, especially to the 4,000 men and women whose hard work put New Jersey together», said Mullen, adding that the nation must prevail in an ideological battle against an adversary it has not seen before.
«The future USS New Jersey will be a critical – some say the most critical – arrow in our quiver», he said.
The company reached the pressure hull complete milestone in February, meaning that all of the ship’s hull sections were joined to form a single, watertight unit. This was one of the last major milestones before the christening, and is floated off to a pierside berth for additional outfitting and testing at a future date.
New Jersey is the 23rd Virginia-class submarine and the 11th to be delivered by Newport News Shipbuilding. It is first submarine designed with a modification for gender integration. Construction began in March 2016 and is 82% complete. The submarine is scheduled to be delivered to the U.S. Navy in late 2022.
General Dynamics Electric Boat Division and Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc. – Newport News Shipbuilding
October 3, 2004
One GE PWR S9G* nuclear reactor, two turbines, one shaft; 40,000 hp/30 MW
377 feet/114.8 m
33 feet/10.0584 m
34 feet/10.3632 m
Approximately 7,800 tons/7,925 metric tons submerged
25+ knots/28+ mph/46.3+ km/h
800+ feet/244+ m
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
MK-60 CAPTOR (Encapsulated Torpedo) mines, advanced mobile mines and UUVs (Unmanned Underwater Vehicles)
Boeing Australia has expanded its flight-test program of the Boeing Airpower Teaming System, with two aircraft successfully completing separate flight missions at the Woomera Range Complex recently.
The first Loyal Wingman aircraft developed with the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) demonstrated a range of key characteristics during the test flights to continue to expand the flight envelope. A second aircraft also successfully completed its first flight mission.
«It is so exciting seeing two aircraft in the air as the Loyal Wingman continues to excel in the flight-test program», said Air Vice-Marshal (AVM) Cath Roberts, RAAF Head of Air Force Capability. «This opens up significant capability agility for Air Force, particularly with features such as the reconfigurable nose».
«We’re heavily engaged in the payload development and the element of surprise that it gives us in the battlespace. You never really know what’s in the nose», said AVM Roberts.
Throughout the flight-test missions, the teams gathered aircraft performance data that will be used to inform and refine the digital twin of the Boeing Airpower Teaming System, with the view to accelerate the aircraft’s development where possible. The digital twin models the system’s entire lifecycle, from design and development to production and sustainment, and contributes to speed and first-time quality.
«We’re in a steady rhythm of flight testing on the way to mission and operational testing, enabling Boeing Australia, RAAF and our Australian industry team of more than 35 companies to progressively advance the flight characteristics and capabilities of the uncrewed teaming system», said Glen Ferguson, director of Boeing Airpower Teaming System – Australia and International. «I’d like to extend my thanks to our capability partner BAE Systems Australia, and to RUAG Australia for their specific roles in this latest test block».
The flight tests of aircraft one included the first time the landing gear was raised and engaged. RUAG Australia supplied the landing gear systems to the aircraft, and BAE Systems Australia was integral in the design, supply and support of the flight control and navigation systems tested as part of the flights.
«This is a great achievement for homegrown, Australian autonomous capabilities», said BAE Systems Australia CEO Gabby Costigan. «Our partnership underpins a shared commitment to develop sovereign technologies and deliver a cutting-edge program for the nation’s defence».
The first batch of Loyal Wingman aircraft are serving as the foundation for the Boeing Airpower Teaming System being developed for various global defence customers. The aircraft will fly alongside other platforms, using artificial intelligence to team with existing crewed and uncrewed assets to complement mission capabilities.
Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) announced on Thursday that it has signed with the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) a KRW 670 billion contract for product engineering and construction for the first vessel of the Gwanggaeto the Great-class III batch-II.
The vessel to be built by HHI under this contract is the first of the three new Aegis destroyers that will be added to the South Korean Navy’s fleet, to be constructed in HHI’s Ulsan-based yard scheduled for delivery by 2024.
With full displacement of 8,100 tons, the new Aegis destroyer has an overall length of 170 meters/558 feet and can sail at a maximum speed of 30 knots/34.5 mph (approximately 55 km/h).
Featuring a newly added Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD) capability, the destroyer can upgrade detecting and tracking capability that has more than doubled as well as an improved submarine-detection range that has more than tripled compared to those of the nation’s first Aegis destroyers, therefore, expected to enhance the naval forces’ operational capabilities. It will also boast a highly formidable combat system equipped with various weapons, including a five-inch gun, guided missiles and torpedoes.
HHI has a successful track record of working on the basic design of and constructing the South Korean Navy’s first Aegis destroyer named Sejong the Great, which was commissioned in 2008. Having also built the nation’s third Aegis destroyer named Seoae Yu Seong-ryong, HHI, with the recently won contract, is now set to be heralded as the builder of three out of the four Aegis destroyers in the nation. To date, it remains the only South Korean shipyard capable of both designing and building Aegis system-equipped vessels on its own.
«This new contract we won is yet another testimony to how HHI is recognized as a rich repository of superior technologies», commented Sang Hoon Nam, Executive Vice President & COO of HHI’s Naval and Special Ship Business Unit. «We aim to help the naval forces secure key weapons systems and its operations go ‘smart’ with enhanced capabilities, by successfully completing this project».
An unmanned air vehicle demonstrated successful airborne recovery during the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Gremlins program’s latest flight test deployment last month. During the deployment, two X-61 Gremlin Air Vehicles (GAV) successfully validated all autonomous formation flying positions and safety features before one GAV ultimately demonstrated airborne recovery to a C-130 Hercules.
«This recovery was the culmination of years of hard work and demonstrates the feasibility of safe, reliable airborne recovery», said Lieutenant Colonel Paul Calhoun, program manager for Gremlins in DARPA’s Tactical Technology Office. «Such a capability will likely prove to be critical for future distributed air operations».
During the final experiment, the team refurbished an X-61 vehicle and conducted a second flight within 24 working-hours. In addition, many hours of data were collected over four flights including air vehicle performance, aerodynamic interactions between the recovery bullet and GAV, and contact dynamics for airborne retrieval. Unfortunately, one GAV was destroyed during the flight tests.
«Airborne recovery is complex», said Calhoun. «We will take some time to enjoy the success of this deployment, then get back to work further analyzing the data and determining next steps for the Gremlins technology».
Safe, effective, and reliable air recoveries promise to dramatically expand the range and potential uses of unmanned air vehicles in conflict situations. The GAVs can be equipped with a variety of sensors and other mission-specific payloads. They can also be launched from various types of military aircraft, keeping manned platforms safely beyond the range of adversary defenses. After air retrieval, the GAVs can be refurbished by ground crews to prepare them for another mission within 24 hours.
Dynetics, a wholly owned subsidiary of Leidos, is developing the Gremlin vehicles.
DARPA Gremlins Program Demonstrates Airborne Recovery
General Dynamics National Steel and Shipbuilding Company (NASSCO) christened and launched the future USNS Harvey Milk (T-AO-206) on November 6, 2021, the second ship for the U.S. Navy’s John Lewis-class fleet oiler program. Mr. Stuart Milk, nephew of the ship’s namesake and Co-Founder and President of the Harvey Milk Foundation, served as the principal speaker at the ceremony in addition to remarks from NASSCO and U.S. Navy representatives.
U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Paula Neira, Navy Veteran and Clinical Program Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Transgender Health were the ship’s sponsors. Prior to launching the 742-foot-long/226-meter-long ship down the ways, Ms. Neira christened the ship with the traditional champagne bottle break alongside the hull.
«We are justifiably proud of every ship we build, but this one is special because of her namesake. Today, we are honoring Stuart’s lifetime of selfless service, his hope for equality, and a world without hate», said David Carver, president of General Dynamics NASSCO. «On behalf of the 35-hundred employees of General Dynamics NASSCO, I am proud to present the future USNS Harvey Milk for christening».
Former Secretary of the U.S. Navy Ray Mabus declared the John Lewis-class of oilers be named after leaders who fought for civil and human rights. The second of six ships honors Harvey Milk, human and civil rights activist who dedicated his life advocating for equality.
«Leaders like Harvey Milk taught us that diversity of backgrounds and experiences help contribute to the strength and resolve of our nation», said Secretary of the U.S. Navy Carlos Del Toro. «There is no doubt that the future Sailors aboard this ship will be inspired by Milk’s life and legacy».
In 2016, General Dynamics NASSCO was awarded the contract by the U.S. Navy for the detailed design and construction of the next generation of fleet oilers, the John Lewis-class (T-AO-205). The contract calls for the design and construction of six 742-foot-long/226-meter-long oilers with a full load displacement of 49,850 tons. Designed to transfer fuel to U.S. Navy carrier strike group ships operating at sea, the oilers have the capacity to carry 157,000 barrels/24,961,005 liters of oil, a significant dry cargo capacity, aviation capability and up to a speed of 20 knots/23 mph/37 km/h. The John Lewis-class ships will replace the current T-AO 187-class fleet replacement oilers.
«The christening of the USNS Harvey Milk (T-AO-206) marks another historic milestone in the history of our Navy and our country. Harvey Milk’s words and actions brought hope and inspiration to many for whom our nation’s lofty rhetoric of equality and inclusion were not yet reality», said ship sponsor Paula Neira. «Today, while we must continue to carry on his work, and much work still needs to be done, by christening and launching this ship we honor his legacy, celebrate the progress that has been made in advancing diversity and inclusion for so many, and we know that wherever the USNS Harvey Milk (T-AO-206) will sail, she will bring that message of hope and inspiration to present and future generations».
In addition to the christening of this ship, two ships in the T-AO class fleet oiler program for the U.S. Navy –the future USNS Earl Warren (T-AO-207), and the future USNS Robert F. Kennedy (T-AO-208) – are currently under construction. The lead ship, the future USNS John Lewis (T-AO-205) was launched earlier this year.