Navy Cuts One Littoral Combat Ship in 2015

Posted by Greg Trauthwein
Thursday, April 10, 2014

 U.S. Navy Aims To Smooth Impact Of Fiscal 2015 Cut To Ship Orders

 
Add to Collection(Oil)|Print
Download:Plain TextXMLAll
 
 
 
 
WASHINGTON, April 10 (Reuters) - The U.S. Navy hopes to smooth out the impact on Lockheed Martin Corp and Australia's Austal of a budget-driven decision to order three Littoral Combat Ships instead of four in fiscal year 2015, the Navy's top weapons buyer said on Thursday.
 
The Navy had planned to buy two of each of the different small warships built by Lockheed and Austal in fiscal 2015 and 2016, but it scaled back those orders to three ships a year as a result of budget cuts mandated by Congress.
 
Assistant Navy Secretary Sean Stackley told members of the Senate Armed Services Committee's seapower subcommittee that Navy officials would now meet with both companies, and evaluate their schedules, material purchases, expenditures and performance before deciding how to divy up the orders this year.
 
"What we are striving for is an outcome that has zero impact to either builder and the vendor base," Stackley told reporters after the hearing. "We're going to arrive at what we think is the best outcome between the two builders and the split of ships between 2015 and 2016," he told reporters.
 
Stackley said the decrease in orders for 2015 would have some effect on the cost of the ships, but the Navy hoped to minimize that impact by working closely with the shipbuilders.
 
The Pentagon is reassessing the $34 billion Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) program and whether to buy all 52 of the fast, agile warships planned, or whether to modify the designs to give the ships more firepower and increase their ability to survive.
 
Stackley said he was confident that the Navy's orders for the ship orders could be timed to maintain both shipyard's production schedules, but he was less confident about smaller vendors that provide materials to the larger contractors.
 
Both companies are under contract to build a total of 10 ships for the Navy, and the final four ships were to be ordered in fiscal 2015, bringing the total built to 24.
 
Stackley said the contracts were contingent on the availability of funding from Congress, but any changes to the contracts would require bilateral agreements, he said.
 
In addition to the budget cuts, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered the Navy to halt orders for the smaller, more agile warships after 32 ships, and to study ways to better protect the ships and give them more firepower.
 
A high-level Navy task force is to deliver recommendations on the issue by July 31, in time to inform the Navy's fiscal 2016 budget deliberations, Stackley told the committee.
 
Senator John McCain, a senior Republican on the committee who has urged the Navy to halt the LCS program after 24 ships, renewed his criticism of the program at the hearing on Thursday.
 
Stackley acknowledged the program encountered sharp cost increases shortly after it began in 2005 but said that was largely due to changes in Navy requirements. He said costs were now far below congressional cost caps, and development was progressing on separate interchangeable equipment packages.
 
Stackley said the ship had some ability to protect itself, but would generally be deployed together with other ships that could provide greater protection against airborne threats.
 
He said the ships were also far more "survivable" than the mine-hunting ships they were replacing, which had no self-defense capability.
 
(By Andrea Shalal; Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Ken Wills)
 
 
Maritime Reporter August 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Shipbuilding

Scorpio Tankers Receive 7 More Newbuildings

Scorpio Tankers Inc. say it has recently taken delivery of seven newbuilding vessels as follows: STI Madison and STI Park, LR2 product tankers, were delivered

LHA 6 'America' Maiden Voyage Completes at San Diego

The Navy informs that the soon to-be-commissioned amphibious assault ship 'USS America' (LHA 6) arrived at its homeport of San Diego after completing its two-month

Austal Delivers Fourth JHSV to the US Navy

The U.S. Navy accepted delivery of USNS Fall River (JHSV 4) from Austal USA yesterday, a week shy of six months from the date they took delivery of JHSV 3. This

Navy

LHA 6 'America' Maiden Voyage Completes at San Diego

The Navy informs that the soon to-be-commissioned amphibious assault ship 'USS America' (LHA 6) arrived at its homeport of San Diego after completing its two-month

Today in U.S. Naval History: September 16

Today in U.S. Naval History - September 16 1854 - Cdr. David G. Farragut takes possession of Mare Island, the first U.S. Navy Yard on the Pacific. 1917 -

Austal Delivers Fourth JHSV to the US Navy

The U.S. Navy accepted delivery of USNS Fall River (JHSV 4) from Austal USA yesterday, a week shy of six months from the date they took delivery of JHSV 3. This

Finance

Fifth Jackup Contract for Keppel from Gulf Drilling

Keppel FELS Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Keppel Offshore & Marine, has secured a contract from Gulf Drilling International Ltd. of Qatar to build a

Scorpio Tankers Receive 7 More Newbuildings

Scorpio Tankers Inc. say it has recently taken delivery of seven newbuilding vessels as follows: STI Madison and STI Park, LR2 product tankers, were delivered

Greek Owners CPP Charter Out Three Tankships

Capital Product Partners L.P. (CPP) an international diversified shipping company, says it has secured time charter employment for the M/T ‘Avax’, M/T ‘Agisilaos’ and M/T ‘Alkiviadis’.

Marine Power

Ship Safety: IMO Committee Agree Draft IGF Code

IMO informs that the draft International Code of Safety for Ships using Gases or other Low flashpoint Fuels (IGF Code), along with proposed amendments to make the Code mandatory under SOLAS,

Cat, Deltamarin Develop Modular FPSO Power Unit

Caterpillar Launches New Modular Solution Developed with Deltamarin for FPSO and Offshore Platform Main Power at 2014 Rio Oil & Gas Expo and Conference Caterpillar

Gas Turbine Acceptance Test Completed for S. Korea Navy

Rolls-Royce has reached a milestone in the Republic of Korea Navy’s FFX frigate program, with the successful completion of acceptance tests for the MT30 gas turbine.

Government Update

Ship Safety: IMO Committee Agree Draft IGF Code

IMO informs that the draft International Code of Safety for Ships using Gases or other Low flashpoint Fuels (IGF Code), along with proposed amendments to make the Code mandatory under SOLAS,

China, Sri Lanka to Launch FTA Talks

Chinese President Xi Jinping began a visit to Sri Lanka on Tuesday agreeing to open bilateral negotiations for a free trade pact as Beijing tightened its embrace

Maritime Academy Awarded DHS Grant for Arctic Training

Maine Maritime Academy receives $450,000 grant From U.S. Department of Homeland Security for ice navigation and maritime first responder courses for the Arctic Maine

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Naval Architecture Navigation Offshore Oil Pipelines Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | 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: 0.1485 sec (7 req/sec)