Is DD21 Program In Peril?

Wednesday, June 13, 2001
Prospects for a proposed all-new $30 billion advanced Navy destroyer foundered on Tuesday, undercut by a study carried out for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. The boom was lowered on the ship, known as DD 21, by an influential panel advising Rumsfeld on ways to "transform" the U.S. military into a more lethal, agile force. "We didn't see a substantial difference in operational capabilities in the DD 21 compared to the other (existing U.S. Navy) systems," panel chairman James McCarthy told a Pentagon news briefing. Competing to design the destroyer are teams led by General Dynamics Corp.'s Bath Iron Works with Lockheed Martin Corp. on the one hand, and Northrop Grumman Corp.'s Ingalls Shipyard with Raytheon Co. on the other. McCarthy, a retired Air Force general, cited several other huge military spending programs as having been found by his panel to be "transformational," including the proposed Joint Strike Fighter warplane and the Lockheed F-22 fighter. The group called for accelerating by two or three years the planned deployment of the U.S. Navy version of the JSF aircraft, currently scheduled to enter service about 2008. Boeing Co. and Lockheed are competing to build the fighter, a highly modular family of planes to be used by the U.S. Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps, and the British Navy. The modernization panel was the first of about 21 such groups advising Rumsfeld to make its recommendations public. The study was undertaken by the Institute for Defense Analyses, a federally funded research center. Rumsfeld is not bound to follow any of the recommendations. Later this year, he is expected to begin putting in place policies growing out of the reviews. In reply to a question, McCarthy, a professor of national security studies at the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo., said his panel did not recommend restarting the dormant Northrop Grumman B-2 bomber production line. Northrop has given Bush advisors cost estimates on resuming output. But it did recommend giving the existing B-2 fleet, made up of 21 bat-winged, low-observability aircraft, a bigger bomb-dropping capability and more flexible targeting enhancements. The Navy did not return a call seeking comment on the blow the panel dealt to the electric-powered DD 21. The service has been planning to buy 32 of the ships over 35 years at a combined cost of about $30 billion, or $750 million per unit after the fourth ship. On May 31, the Navy postponed the choice of a winning design until a Defense Department shipbuilding review and the other studies were wrapped up. In discounting the destroyer, McCarthy said the panel did not recommend killing any programs. But he said his group, which included "more admirals than anything else," was not persuaded that either it or a planned next-generation nuclear-powered aircraft carrier known as CVX was "transformational." "The bottom line is that we felt that continuation of what we're building now is the right answer" as far as destroyers and aircraft carriers go, he said. - (Reuters)
Maritime Reporter May 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Finance

AAPA Applauds Senate Passage of Trade Promotion Legislation

The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) applauded Senate passage over the past weekend of the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015 (TPA-2015),

Port of Duluth Intermodal Project Underway

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administrator, Chip Jaenichen, today joined Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken, Congressman Rick Nolan, Duluth Mayor Don Ness,

Chile Exporters Fret as Customs Strike Continues

A customs strike in Chile that began last week has started to affect exports and imports, although miners in the top copper producer said this week they have not yet been significantly impacted.

 
 
Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Navigation Offshore Oil Pod Propulsion Port Authority Salvage Ship Repair Ship Simulators Sonar
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1502 sec (7 req/sec)