All posts by Dmitry Shulgin

Path to Launch

Northrop Grumman Corporation’s delivery of the fully integrated Optical Telescope Element (OTE) for NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope marks another major milestone toward the October 2018 launch of the largest telescope ever built for space.

The spacecraft, or bus, of NASA's James Webb Space Telescope is designed and developed at Northrop Grumman. The bus recently reached a major milestone, successfully completing first time power-on, showcasing the spacecraft's ability to provide observatory power and electrical resources for the Webb telescope
The spacecraft, or bus, of NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope is designed and developed at Northrop Grumman. The bus recently reached a major milestone, successfully completing first time power-on, showcasing the spacecraft’s ability to provide observatory power and electrical resources for the Webb telescope

Northrop Grumman delivered the OTE in March to NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. Northrop Grumman is under contract to Goddard and leads the industry team that designs and develops the Webb Telescope, its sunshield and spacecraft. Northrop Grumman has completed the integration, testing and delivery of the telescope.

The Webb telescope’s 18 hexagonal gold coated beryllium mirrors are supported by the telescope structure. The OTE hardware is made of the most precise graphite composite material system ever created, and contributes to the Webb Telescope’s ability to provide an unprecedented exploratory view into the formation of the first stars and galaxies formed over 13.5 billion years ago.

The precision manufacturing and integration of the 21.5-foot/6.5-meter telescope structure allow it to withstand the pressure and weight of the launch loads when stowed inside the 15-foot/4.6-meter-diameter fairing of the Ariane 5 rocket. The cutting-edge design and transformer like capabilities of the telescope structure allow it to fold-up and fit inside the launch vehicle, and then deploy once the Webb telescope reaches its ultimate destination, one million miles away from earth. Furthermore, throughout travel and deployment, the telescope simultaneously maintains its dimensional stability while also operating at cryogenic or extremely cold temperatures, approximately 400 degrees below zero Fahrenheit/240 degrees below zero Celsius. The telescope is the world’s first deployable structure of this size and dimensional stability ever designed and built.

«The significant milestone of completing and delivering the OTE to NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, marks the completion of the telescope, and attests to the commitment of our hardworking team», said Scott Texter, telescope manager, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems. «The telescope structure is one of the four main elements of this revolutionary observatory. The other elements include: the spacecraft, sunshield and the Integrated Science Instrument Module (ISIM), the latter of which is also complete. All of the elements require a collaborative team effort. We are all committed to the cause and excited about the upcoming phases of development as we prepare for launch in October 2018».

The next step in the progress of the telescope structure includes its integration with the ISIM to combine the OTE and ISIM, referred to as the OTIS. The OTIS will undergo vibration and acoustic testing by the end of this year, and then travel to NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, to undergo optical testing at vacuum and operational cryogenic temperatures, around 40 kelvin/233 degrees below zero Celsius. The OTIS will be delivered to Northrop Grumman’s Space Park facility in Redondo Beach, towards the end of 2017, where it will be integrated with the sunshield and spacecraft.

The James Webb Space Telescope is the world’s next-generation space observatory and successor to the Hubble Space Telescope. The most powerful space telescope ever built, the Webb Telescope will observe the most distant objects in the universe, provide images of the first galaxies formed and see unexplored planets around distant stars. The Webb Telescope is a joint project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Canadian Space Agency.

Poseidon first flight

Australia’s first P-8A Poseidon aircraft has completed its maiden flight. The aircraft flew a short distance from Renton Airfield to Boeing Field in Washington State USA, to where the P-8A’s sophisticated mission systems will be installed as part of project AIR 7000.

The first P-8A aircraft for the Royal Australian Air Force leaves Renton Field for Boeing Field in nearby Seattle, marking its transfer from Commercial Airplanes to Boeing Defense, Space & Security for final completion
The first P-8A aircraft for the Royal Australian Air Force leaves Renton Field for Boeing Field in nearby Seattle, marking its transfer from Commercial Airplanes to Boeing Defense, Space & Security for final completion

The $5.4 billion P-8A program will provide Australia’s future manned maritime patrol and response aircraft capability, replacing in part the AP-3C Orion aircraft.

The P-8A Poseidon is 129.5 feet/39.47 metres long, has a maximum takeoff weight of 189,200 lbs/85,820 kg and a wingspan of 123.6 feet/37.64 m. Powered by two jet engines, it has a top speed is 490 knots/564 mph/908 km/h with a maximum range of 4,660 miles/7,500 km.

Head of Aerospace Division, Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Catherine Roberts congratulated on May 25 Defence’s cooperative program partner, the United States Navy along with prime contractor Boeing Defence Space and Security, on achieving this significant milestone.

«This major acquisition is creating opportunities for Australian defence industry to participate in maintenance and to develop training facilities and infrastructure», AVM Roberts said. «Aircraft production includes around $25 million of high-tech production work undertaken by local subsidiary, Boeing Aerostructures Australia. «The primary roles of the P-8A include the detection and response to naval surface and submarine threats, surveillance and reconnaissance, and assisting in search and rescue operations».

With a saving of US$260 million compared to the initial budget, the P-8A Poseidon aircraft were acquired through a cooperative program with the United States Navy and contracted to Boeing Defence Space and Security.

A Royal Australian Air Force crew will fly the aircraft to Australia in late 2016 following post-production checks and acceptance.

Boeing will also provide the RAAF with a complete training system for the P-8A
Boeing will also provide the RAAF with a complete training system for the P-8A

 

Technical Specifications

Wing Span 123.6 feet/37.64 m
Height 42.1 feet/12.83 m
Length 129.5 feet/39.47 m
Propulsion 2 × CFM56-7B engines; 27,000 lbs/12,237 kgf/120 kN thrust
Speed 490 knots/564 mph/908 km/h
Range 1,200 NM/1,381 miles/2,222 km with 4 hours on station
Ceiling 41,000 feet/12,496 m
Crew 9
Maximum Take-Off Gross Weight 189,200 lbs/85,820 kg

 

P-8A Poseidon maiden flight

 

Navy Railgun

Raytheon Company has begun deliveries of pulse power containers in support of the U.S. Navy’s Railgun program. The containers, which are comprised of multiple pulsed power modules, will be integrated into the U.S. Navy’s Railgun test range for additional development and testing.

Raytheon built this pulse power container to provide the mighty 32-megajoule jolt that the U.S. Navy's new railgun requires. The railgun would fire a projectile at six times the speed of sound (PRNewsFoto/Raytheon Company)
Raytheon built this pulse power container to provide the mighty 32-megajoule jolt that the U.S. Navy’s new railgun requires. The railgun would fire a projectile at six times the speed of sound (PRNewsFoto/Raytheon Company)

The modular pulsed power containers, when combined, produce enough energy to enable the electromagnetic launch of a railgun’s high-velocity projectile at speeds in excess of Mach 6 (six times the speed of sound).

«Directed energy has the potential to redefine military technology beyond missiles and our pulse power modules and containers will provide the tremendous amount of energy required to power applications like the Navy Railgun», said Colin Whelan, vice president of Advanced Technology for Raytheon’s Integrated Defense Systems business. «Raytheon’s engineering and manufacturing expertise uniquely position us to support next generation weapon systems to meet the ever-evolving threat».

Raytheon’s pulse power container design is the result of work stemming from an initial $10 million contract with Naval Sea Systems Command to develop a pulsed power system, which will enable land or sea-based projectiles to reach great distances without the use of an explosive charge or rocket motor. Raytheon is one of three contractors developing a Pulse Power Container (PPC) design for the U.S. Navy.

Luigi Rizzo
begins sea trials

On May 17, ITS Luigi Rizzo cast off at 7.20 a.m. from Fincantieri shipyard in Muggiano (La Spezia) for her first sea outing. This activity marks the beginning of the programme of sea trials which will continue until the completion of the ship’s outfitting phase. The FREMM frigate is scheduled to be delivered to the Italian Navy in early 2017.

The Italian Navy’s sixth FREMM-class frigate, ITS Luigi Rizzo, sails from Fincantieri’s Muggiano shipyard on her initial sea trials (IT Navy photo)
The Italian Navy’s sixth FREMM-class frigate, ITS Luigi Rizzo, sails from Fincantieri’s Muggiano shipyard on her initial sea trials (IT Navy photo)

The ship had on board Vice-Admiral Donato Marzano, Italian Navy Logistic Commander and Chairman of the Naval Ship Acceptance Commission, personnel from Marinalles New Ships Outfitting and Testing Navy Centre, representatives from technical organisations involved in testing activities, and some of future crew members.

ITS Luigi Rizzo – the sixth new-generation frigate commissioned by the Italian Navy within the framework of the FREMM (European Multimission Frigate) Italo-French Programme, and second in General Purpose (GP) version – is characterised by high flexibility and is designed to cover a variety of operational deployments. Laid down on March 5 2013, it was launched on December 19 2015 at the Fincantieri shipyard in Riva Trigoso (Genoa).

Thanks to their command and control capabilities and logistic autonomy, FREMM frigates will be able to provide patrol service (presence and surveillance) and to conduct activities related to monitoring of migration flows and shipping control, as well as counter-terrorism and counter-piracy operations. Moreover, their prominent dual use capabilities will allow for their deployment on humanitarian assistance and disaster relief missions, including civil protection and support for cultural heritage.

FREMM-IT will replace the Maestrale and Lupo frigates in service with the Italian Navy
FREMM-IT will replace the Maestrale and Lupo frigates in service with the Italian Navy

 

Main Characteristics

Length overall 472.4 feet/144 m
Width 64.6 feet/19.7 m
Depth (main deck) 37 feet/11.3 m
Displacement 6700 tonnes
Maximum speed 27 knots/31 mph/50 km/h
Crew 145 people
Accommodation Up to 200 men and women
CODLAG PROPULSION SYSTEM
Avio-GE LM2500+G4 32 MW
Electric propulsion motors 2 × 2,5 MW
Diesel Generator (DG) sets 4 × 2,1 MW
Propellers 2 × Controllable-Pitch Propeller (CPP)
Endurance 45 days
Range at 15 knots/17 mph/28 km/h 6,000 NM/6,905 miles/11,112 km
COMBAT SYSTEM
Anti-Air Warfare (AAW)/ Anti-Surface Warfare (ASuW) Capabilities
Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Defence
Electronic Warfare (EW) Capabilities

 

Unveiling of Gripen E

Defence and security company Saab took the next step in the evolution of the Gripen fighter system on 18 May, with the unveiling of the first test aircraft of the next generation, Gripen E. Gripen E is equipped with a highly integrated and sophisticated sensor suite including an Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar, Infra-Red Search and Track (IRST), Electronic Warfare (EW) suite, and datalink technology, which, when combined gives the pilot, and co-operating forces exactly the information needed at all times.

Gripen is more than a fighter: it’s a national asset that protects sovereign independence and empowers a nation towards a more secure future
Gripen is more than a fighter: it’s a national asset that protects sovereign independence and empowers a nation towards a more secure future

The unveiling of the first Gripen E test aircraft took place at Saab’s facilities in Linköping. Among the speakers are the Swedish Minister for Defence, Peter Hultqvist; the Swedish Air Force Chief of Staff, Mats Helgesson; Commander of the Brazilian Air Force, Nivaldo Luiz Rossato; and from Saab the Chairman of the Board, Marcus Wallenberg; the CEO, Håkan Buskhe and head of business area Aeronautics, Ulf Nilsson.

«There is huge global interest in the Gripen fighter system and we are now ready to present the first Gripen E. We look forward to sharing this important event with both guests and viewers», says Ulf Nilsson, head of Saab business area Aeronautics. «This key milestone is proof of our ability to build world-class fighters on time and on budget and it brings us one step closer to first flight and delivery to our customer», says Ulf Nilsson.

The Gripen evolution
The Gripen evolution

 

KEY DATA

Length overall 15.2 m/50 feet
Width overall 8.6 m/28 feet
Basic mass empty 8,000 kg/17,637 lbs
Internal fuel 3,400 kg/7,496 lbs
Maximum takeoff weight 16,500 kg/36,376 lbs
Maximum thrust 98 kN/9,993 kgf/22,031 lbf
Minimum takeoff distance 500 m/1,640 feet
Landing distance 600 m/1,968 feet
Maximum speed at sea level > 756 knots/870 mph/1400 km/h
Maximum speed at high altitude Mach 2
Supercruise capability Yes
Maximum service altitude > 16,000 m/52,500 feet
G-limits -3G / +9G
Hardpoints 10
Combat turnaround air-to-air 10 min
Full engine replacement 1 hour

 

Saab Unveils the New Gripen E Smart Fighter

Christening of Portland

Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) Ingalls Shipbuilding division christened the amphibious transport dock USS Portland (LPD-27) on May 21 in front of approximately 1,000 guests. U.S. Marine Corps Major General Christopher Owens, director of the U.S. Navy’s expeditionary warfare division, was the keynote speaker. «Marines love these ships», he said. «They are perhaps the most versatile ships in the fleet. And in this current era when the United States faces a variety of threats and potential crises across the globe, LPDs uniquely enable the Navy and Marine Corps team to adapt and respond to a full range of scenarios we might face».

Ship Sponsor Bonnie Amos christens the amphibious transport dock Portland (LPD-27), accompanied by (left to right) U.S. Marine Corps Major General Christopher Owens, director of the U.S. Navy’s expeditionary warfare division; Captain Jeremy Hill, prospective commanding officer, Portland; Ted Waller, a World War II veteran who served on the first USS Portland (CA-33); and Brian Cuccias, president of Ingalls Shipbuilding (Photo by Lance Davis/HII)
Ship Sponsor Bonnie Amos christens the amphibious transport dock Portland (LPD-27), accompanied by (left to right) U.S. Marine Corps Major General Christopher Owens, director of the U.S. Navy’s expeditionary warfare division; Captain Jeremy Hill, prospective commanding officer, Portland; Ted Waller, a World War II veteran who served on the first USS Portland (CA-33); and Brian Cuccias, president of Ingalls Shipbuilding (Photo by Lance Davis/HII)

USS Portland (LPD-27), the 11th San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock, is named for the largest city in the state of Oregon. The state has a long history with the U.S. Navy, going back to the construction of hundreds of World War II Liberty and Victory ships at three Portland-area shipyards. Bonnie Amos, wife of retired Marine Corps Commandant General James Amos, is the ship’s sponsor and smashed a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow of the ship, officially christening Portland. «Today is about Ingalls shipbuilders», she said. «Today is about the pride in what has transpired to make this ship, LPD-27, the greatest ship and the best in her class».

Ingalls has delivered 10 San Antonio-class ships to the U.S. Navy with the most recent, USS John P. Murtha (LPD-26), delivering on May 13. Ingalls has received more than $300 million in advance procurement funding for the 12th ship in the class, USS Fort Lauderdale (LPD-28).

«Portland is the 11th ship in the San Antonio class, and she is the best LPD to date», Ingalls Shipbuilding President Brian Cuccias said. «Working closely with our Navy partner, we continue to improve on each ship we build. We’re investing, along with the great state of Mississippi and the Navy, in modernizing our facilities. Combine that with a hot production line and our talented and experienced shipbuilders, and we are uniquely positioned to provide our country with the highest-quality, most capable ships in our Navy’s fleet».

LPD-27 is the third ship named Portland. The first USS Portland (CA-33) was the lead ship of a new class of heavy cruisers. Launched in 1932, it was named after the city of Portland, Maine, and saw battle during World War II. The second USS Portland (LSD-37), an amphibious landing ship commissioned in 1970, was named after both Portland, Maine and Oregon. She completed 14 deployments to the Caribbean, Mediterranean and North Atlantic.

«Our number one congressional responsibility is the common defense of this nation», said Representative Steven Palazzo, Republican Party-Mississippi. «Part of our national defense includes amazing ships like the LPD-27 San Antonio-class amphibious ship. With the daily occurrence of global threats, it’s obvious we don’t need just more ships, but ships that are survivable and capable. After all, they carry America’s most precious treasure, our men and women in uniform».

The San Antonio class is the latest addition to the Navy’s 21st century amphibious assault force. The 684-foot-long/208-meter-long, 105-foot-wide/32-meter-wide ships are used to embark and land Marines, their equipment and supplies ashore via air cushion or conventional landing craft and amphibious assault vehicles, augmented by helicopters or vertical takeoff and landing aircraft such as the MV-22 Osprey. The ships support a Marine Air Ground Task Force across the spectrum of operations, conducting amphibious and expeditionary missions of sea control and power projection to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief missions throughout the first half of the 21st century.

 

General Characteristics

Builder Huntington Ingalls Industries
Propulsion Four sequentially turbocharged marine Colt-Pielstick Diesels, two shafts, 41,600 shaft horsepower
Length 684 feet/208 m
Beam 105 feet/32 m
Displacement Approximately 24,900 long tons (25,300 metric tons) full load
Draft 23 feet/7 m
Speed In excess of 22 knots/24.2 mph/38.7 km/h
Crew Ship’s Company: 374 Sailors (28 officers, 346 enlisted) and 3 Marines. Embarked Landing Force: 699 (66 officers, 633 enlisted); surge capacity to 800
Armament Two Bushmaster II 30-mm Close in Guns, fore and aft; two Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) launchers, fore and aft: ten .50 calibre/12.7-mm machine guns
Aircraft Launch or land two CH-53E Super Stallion helicopters or two MV-22 Osprey tilt rotor aircraft or up to four CH-46 Sea Knight helicopters, AH-1 or UH-1 helicopters
Landing/Attack Craft Two LCACs or one LCU; and 14 Expeditionary Fighting Vehicles/Amphibious Assault Vehicles
USS Portland (LPD-27) is seen here in the middle of launch early Saturday morning at Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula. Portland is the 11th San Antonio-class landing platform dock (Photo by Andrew Young/HII)
USS Portland (LPD-27) is seen here in the middle of launch early Saturday morning at Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula. Portland is the 11th San Antonio-class landing platform dock (Photo by Andrew Young/HII)

 

San Antonio-class

Ship Builder Launched Commissioned Homeport
USS San Antonio (LPD-17) Avondale 07-12-2003 01-14-2006 Norfolk, Virginia
USS New Orleans (LPD-18) Avondale 12-11-2004 03-10-2007 San Diego, California
USS Mesa Verde (LPD-19) Ingalls 11-19-2004 12-15-2007 Norfolk, Virginia
USS Green Bay (LPD-20) Avondale 08-11-2006 01-24-2009 San Diego, California
USS New York (LPD-21) Avondale 12-19-2007 11-07-2009 Norfolk, Virginia
USS San Diego (LPD-22) Ingalls 05-07-2010 05-19-2012 San Diego, California
USS Anchorage (LPD-23) Avondale 02-12-2011 05-04-2013 San Diego, California
USS Arlington (LPD-24) Ingalls 11-23-2010 02-08-2013 Norfolk, Virginia
USS Somerset (LPD-25) Avondale 04-14-2012 05-01-2014 San Diego, California
USS John P. Murtha (LPD-26) Ingalls 11-02-2014 San Diego, California
USS Portland (LPD-27) Ingalls 02-13-2016
USS Fort Lauderdale (LPD-28) Ingalls

 

Delivery of Zumwalt

The U.S. Navy accepted delivery of future USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000), the lead ship of the Navy’s next-generation of multimission surface combatants, May 20. USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) is tailored for sustained operations in the littorals and land attack, and will provide independent forward presence and deterrence, support special operations forces, and operate as an integral part of joint and combined expeditionary forces.

The future guided-missile destroyer USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) transits the Atlantic Ocean during acceptance trials April 21, 2016 with the Navy's Board of Inspection and Survey (INSURV) (U.S. Navy/Released)
The future guided-missile destroyer USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) transits the Atlantic Ocean during acceptance trials April 21, 2016 with the Navy’s Board of Inspection and Survey (INSURV) (U.S. Navy/Released)

Ship delivery follows extensive tests, trials and demonstrations of the ship’s hull, mechanical, and electrical systems including the ship’s boat handling, anchor and mooring systems as well as major demonstrations of the damage control, ballasting, navigation and communications systems.

«Today represents a significant achievement for not only the DDG-1000 program and shipbuilding team but for the entire U.S. Navy», said Rear Admiral (select) Jim Downey, DDG-1000 program manager, Program Executive Office Ships. «This impressive ship incorporates a new design alongside the integration of sophisticated new technologies that will lead the Navy into the next generation of capabilities».

The 610-foot/186-meter, wave-piercing tumblehome ship design provides a wide array of advancements. The shape of the superstructure and the arrangement of its antennas significantly reduce radar cross section, making the ship less visible to enemy radar at sea.

USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) is the first U.S. Navy surface combatant to employ an innovative and highly survivable Integrated Power System (IPS) distributing 1000 volts of direct current across the ship. The IPS’ unique architectural capabilities include the ability to allocate all 78 megawatts of installed power to propulsion, ship’s service, and combat system loads from the same gas turbine prime movers based on operational requirements. Each ship in the class features a battery of two Advanced Gun Systems, capable of firing Long-Range Land Attack Projectiles (LRLAP) that reach up to 63 nautical miles/72.5 miles/116.6 km, providing three-fold range improvement in naval surface fires coverage. Each ship is equipped with eighty Advanced Vertical Launch System cells for Tomahawk missiles, Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles, Standard Missiles, and Vertical Launch Anti-Submarine Rockets (ASROC) (VLA).

The ship will employ active and passive sensors and a Multi-Function Radar (MFR) capable of conducting area air surveillance, including over-land, throughout the extremely difficult and cluttered sea-land interface.

Following delivery and a crew certification period at General Dynamics-Bath Iron Works, the ship will be commissioned in Baltimore October 15. Zumwalt will then transit to her homeport in San Diego in late 2016 where Mission Systems Activation will continue in parallel with a Post Delivery Availability.

«Zumwalt’s crew has diligently trained for months in preparation of this day and they are ready and excited to take charge of this ship on behalf of the U.S. Navy», said Captain James Kirk, commanding officer of future Zumwalt. «These are 143 of our nation’s finest men and women who continue to honor Admiral Zumwalt’s namesake with their dedication to bringing this ship to life».

General Dynamics-Bath Iron Works (BIW) is also constructing follow-on ships, the future USS Michael Monsoor (DDG-1001) and USS Lyndon B. Johnson (DDG-1002).

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

The U.S. Navy continually monitors force readiness and ability to provide the most robust, capable maritime force possible. Stationing destroyers in a West Coast port supports rebalance to the Indo-Asia-Pacific region, placing our most advanced capabilities and greater capacity in that vital theater. By 2020, approximately 60 percent of U.S. Navy ships and aircraft will be based in the region.

The U.S. Navy accepted delivery of DDG-1000, the future guided-missile destroyer USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) (U.S. Navy/Released)
The U.S. Navy accepted delivery of DDG-1000, the future guided-missile destroyer USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) (U.S. Navy/Released)

 

Features unique to DDG 1000:

  • Eighty peripheral Vertical Launch System (VLS) cells, two Advanced Gun System (AGS) 155-mm guns, and two 30-mm Close In Guns (CIGs);
  • A stern boat ramp for two 7-meter Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats (RHIBs), designed with room for two 11-meter RHIBs;
  • Aviation capacity for two MH-60R or one MH-60R and 3 VT Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs);
  • It will be powered by an Integrated Power System (IPS) with an Integrated Fight Through Power (IFTP). This is created by an Advanced Induction Motor (AIM);
  • A superstructure with integrated apertures and low signature profile;
  • Advanced sensors including a SPY-3 Multi-Function Radar;
  • A wave-piercing «Tumblehome» hull form.
Following a crew certification period and October commissioning ceremony in Baltimore, Zumwalt will transit to its homeport in San Diego for a Post Delivery Availability and Mission Systems Activation (U.S. Navy/Released)
Following a crew certification period and October commissioning ceremony in Baltimore, Zumwalt will transit to its homeport in San Diego for a Post Delivery Availability and Mission Systems Activation (U.S. Navy/Released)

 

Ship Characteristics

Length 610 feet/186 m
Beam 80.7 feet/24.6 m
Draft 27.6 feet/8.4 m
Displacement 15,761 long tonnes/16,014 metric tonnes
Speed 30 knots/34.5 mph/55.5 km/h
Installed Power 104,600 hp/78 MW
Crew Size 158 – Includes Aviation Detachment

 

Next-generation destroyer Zumwalt (DDG-1000) underway for the first time conducting at-sea tests and trials in the Atlantic Ocean on December 7, 2015

 

Ships

Ship Laid down Launched Commissioned Homeport
USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) 11-17-2011 10-28-2013 10-15-2016 San Diego
USS Michael Monsoor (DDG-1001) 05-23-2013
USS Lyndon B. Johnson (DDG-1002)
DDG-1000 is the lead ship of the Zumwalt-class destroyers, next-generation, multi-mission surface combatants, tailored for land attack and littoral dominance (U.S. Navy/Released)
DDG-1000 is the lead ship of the Zumwalt-class destroyers, next-generation, multi-mission surface combatants, tailored for land attack and littoral dominance (U.S. Navy/Released)

Aegis Site in Poland

United States and Polish officials commemorated the start of the construction phase of an Aegis Ashore Missile Defense System (AAMDS) complex during a ceremony in Redzikowo, Poland on May 13.

The U.S. Navy achieved operational certification of the Aegis Ashore site at Deveselu Air Base in Romania. This officially fulfills Phase II of the European Phased Adaptive Approach, a plan to protect deployed U.S. forces and our European allies from ballistic missile attack (Photo courtesy Missile Defense Agency)
The U.S. Navy achieved operational certification of the Aegis Ashore site at Deveselu Air Base in Romania. This officially fulfills Phase II of the European Phased Adaptive Approach, a plan to protect deployed U.S. forces and our European allies from ballistic missile attack (Photo courtesy Missile Defense Agency)

«Our partnership with Poland and Romania underwrites U.S. military activities in the region and reflects our steadfast commitment to enhancing regional security», said Robert Work, Deputy Secretary of Defense, «countering the threat of ballistic missile attacks from outside the Euro-Atlantic area is a collective security challenge that requires collective defense».

Aegis Ashore, a critical part of the European Phased Adaptive Approach (EPAA), is a land-based capability of the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) System constructed to defend NATO populations, territory, and forces against ballistic missile threats from outside the Euro-Atlantic area. The EPAA concept is the U.S.’s multi-phase effort to support NATO BMD, which includes for using BMD-capable Aegis ships, Aegis Ashore Missile Defense sites, a forward deployed radar in Turkey, and a command and control network located at Ramstein Air Base (AB), Germany.

The commencement of construction on the site in Poland represents a key milestone to complete Phase III of the EPAA. U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa/U.S. 6th Fleet recognized another key milestone toward completion of Phase II of the EPAA by deeming the AAMDS in Romania as operationally certified in a ceremony held at Naval Support Facility Deveselu, May 12.

The BMD complex at Redzikowo will consist of a fire-control radar deckhouse with an associated Aegis command, control and communications suite. Separately, it will house several launch modules containing Standard Missile 3 (SM-3) missiles. Once complete, the Aegis Ashore BMD site in Poland will host the upgraded SM-3 Block IIA. The delivery of this improved weapons system, and the increased BMD infrastructure under EPAA, will improve the defensive coverage against medium- and intermediate-range threats.

«Aegis Ashore reflects the strength of our relationship as Allies and our resolve in promoting security and close regional cooperation in Europe», added Work. «This enhancement marks another milestone and is consistent with the enduring partnership between the U.S., Poland and Romania. The Department of Defense looks forward to continued work with our NATO allies in developing BMD».

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Europe District is managing the project. Two major construction contracts for missile defense and Navy support facilities in Redzikowo were awarded this year. Naval Support Facility (NSF) Redzikowo is expected to be established in fall of 2016 and will host the missile defense complex and supporting personnel when it opens in 2018. Technical capability of the U.S. BMD complex is expected to be delivered in the 2018 timeframe.

Ballistic Missile Defense System Overview
Ballistic Missile Defense System Overview

Third Offset Strategy

The three desktop chimes brought the intelligence analyst to full attention. These were no instant messages; they were alerts from the Intersect Sentry app, a software tool that boosts the power of human analysts to comb through dense, flowing data and pick out significant developments in real time.

The U.S. Navy's experimental ship Stiletto off the coast of Virginia Beach, Virginia. Raytheon's Sentry intelligence app was demonstrated aboard the ship (U.S. Navy photo)
The U.S. Navy’s experimental ship Stiletto off the coast of Virginia Beach, Virginia. Raytheon’s Sentry intelligence app was demonstrated aboard the ship (U.S. Navy photo)

The analyst was stationed in the forward operations center for the U.S. Navy experimental ship M80 Stiletto, a prototype stealth vessel built for coastal operations, during the Navy’s Maritime Technology Demonstration exercise. The M80 Stiletto is equipped with four Caterpillar, Inc. C32 1,232 kW (1,652 hp) engines yielding a top speed in excess of 60 knots/69 mph/110 km/h and a range of 500 nautical miles/575 miles/900 km when fully loaded. It can be outfitted with jet drives for shallow water operations and beaching. It weighs 45 tons unloaded, light enough that it can be hoisted onto a cargo ship, while still able to carry up to 20 tons of cargo. The ship is 88.6 feet/27 m in length, with a width of 40 feet/12 m and a height of 18.5 feet/5.6 m, yet has a draft of only 2.5 feet/0.8 m. The M80 Stiletto is the largest U.S. naval vessel built using carbon-fiber composites, advanced composite materials and epoxy building techniques, which yields a very light yet super strong hull.

Using Sentry, the analyst modeled the M80 Stiletto, its maritime environment, and facilities and certain locations. As Stiletto maneuvered, Sentry relied on optical sensors to identify potential threats that came within range, as unidentified ships or persons of interest on the shore.

Raytheon’s Sentry fits the U.S. Department of Defense goal under what is known as the Third Offset Strategy: technology breakthroughs that create battlefield advantages.

«Sentry identifies relevant data in less than a second that used to take an analyst hours or days to pick out», said Stephen Handel, Raytheon Intersect Sentry deputy chief engineer. «A customer reported that Sentry would allow them to re-task analysts from 24/7 monitoring of vessel activity to higher order analytic tasks».

The Third Offset Strategy aims to bolster the human-machine connection to create new and more powerful capabilities. That’s what Sentry does; it works as an analyst’s teammate, cherry-picking the right data and delivering that information through a customizable interface. Analysts select preferences and data discriminators, and move onto other tasks. The app’s algorithm deploys software agents in the background; they scan through hundreds of millions of events per day, delivering only the most relevant information via alerts.

Sentry can identify radar tracks, social media, ships and vehicles from imagery and signals data.

«Our mission is to integrate humans and the systems they use», said Guy Swope, Raytheon Analytics Capability Center leader. «The Intersect suite is an answer to the call for a Third Offset Strategy in the fight against terror in the digital age. It’s a simple strategy – change the way we fight in the field and in cyberspace».

Rolls-Royce diesel

Rolls-Royce is to supply twelve MTU diesel gensets to prime contractor BAE Systems for the first three Type 26 Global Combat Ships (GCS) due to go into service with the Royal Navy.

The four MTU diesel gensets on board each Type 26 Global Combat Ship are based on 20V 4000 M53B engines, each delivering 3,015 kW of mechanical power
The four MTU diesel gensets on board each Type 26 Global Combat Ship are based on 20V 4000 M53B engines, each delivering 3,015 kW of mechanical power

The deal means that the core components of the frigate’s combined propulsion system will come from Rolls-Royce: four MTU diesel gensets with 20V 4000 M53B engines, each delivering 3,015 kW of mechanical power, and one Rolls-Royce MT30 gas turbine. The MTU brand is part of Rolls-Royce Power Systems.

«The fact that we’re involved with our diesel gensets in this leading-edge project by the Royal Navy fills us with great pride and demonstrates the precision with which Rolls-Royce is able to meet customer requirements», said Knut Müller, head of MTU’s governmental business. «One key reason for winning this order is MTU’s wealth of experience of combined propulsion systems».

The Type 26 Global Combat Ship is the first newly-designed Royal Navy surface vessel to be equipped with MTU engines. It is also the first time Rolls-Royce has supplied a naval vessel with an MTU propulsion system that meets the requirements of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) III emissions directive. To achieve this, each of the four engines on the vessel will be fitted with an exhaust aftertreatment system, which uses a Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) unit to neutralise nitrogen oxide emissions. Rolls-Royce has carried out extensive testing of this technology, which has already been successfully used in MTU off-highway applications, for use in maritime propulsion systems.

The Type 26 Global Combat Ship is the Royal Navy’s third major project involving MTU engines. Rolls-Royce is supplying Series 4000 diesel gensets for the refit of the Duke-class (Type 23) frigates, while the Astute-class submarines already have MTU diesel gensets.

Within the Combined Diesel-Electric or Gas Turbine (CODELOG) propulsion system for the Type 26 frigates, the MTU diesel gensets will provide electrical power for on-board electronics and for cruising propulsion. The Rolls-Royce gas turbine will be used for propulsion when travelling at high-speeds. The MTU gensets are bedded on specialist mounts and surrounded by an acoustic enclosure, ensuring that the propulsion system operates at low noise levels. A similar propulsion system featuring MTU diesel gensets is used aboard the German F-125 class frigates and French FREMM frigates.

The MTU product range for the government shipping sector comprises engines with power outputs of between 269 and 10,000 kW. As a system supplier, MTU is also able to develop and supply complete propulsion solutions including ship automation systems.

The MTU gensets have double-resilient mounting systems and are housed within acoustic enclosures. This creates a propulsion system with an extremely low level of acoustic emissions
The MTU gensets have double-resilient mounting systems and are housed within acoustic enclosures. This creates a propulsion system with an extremely low level of acoustic emissions