US Military News, Reports, Data, etc.


TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
I didn't quite get your point, anyway how big are those contracts, two mil, three mil? LOL that would a price of one (1) F-35 wheel, I guess LOL
They started a program and caned it in side a month. Sure all together it might have equaled the price of a single F35A... no wait more like 3 when you consider spare parts, paperwork, deliveries and testing. but then Does it all have to be Billion dollar warships with you? End of the day every thing from the carrier to the F35 to the Space Force is all there to support the most critical asset in a battle. The Grunt and his weapon.
Any who Since I am posting small arms.
The Air Force is arming pilots with this longer-range, stand-off rifle to use if they’re ever shot down


By:
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  June 28

The Air Force isn’t necessarily known for its small arms programs, but
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are about to get a longer range stand-off rifle to use if they are ever shot down
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.

The weapon is officially named the GAU-5A Aircrew Self Defense Weapon. It’s a variant of the
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with a modified quick-release barrel designed by Cry Havoc, according to Maj. Docleia Gibson, an
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spokeswoman.

“The [GAU-5A] and four full magazines, 30 rounds [each], must all fit in the ejection seat survival kit,” Gibson said in an emailed statement. “This has driven the dimension of 16 x 14 x 3.5 inches.”

That design gives pilots 120 rounds — about two magazines shy of a full load-out on a ground troop’s personal kit — during an evasion scenario.

The unique barrel design can reportedly be assembled and fired in 60 seconds with no tools, “even in low light,” according to
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.

The assembly does not require a user to line up any tiny, hard-to-find gas access holes with a gas tube on the rifle, nor does it require a twist of the system. The rifle simply has a pair of quick releases where the barrel meets the main assembly.




The U.S. Air Force’s new GAU-5A Aircrew Self Defense Weapon, fully assembled. (Air Combat Command)


Like the M4 carbine it is based off, the GAU-5A is a semi-automatic carbine capable of a three-round burst. It uses a standard 5.56mm round with an effective range beyond 200 meters.

“The [GAU-5A] is designed for all combat-coded ejection aircraft,” Gibson said.

That means it will be included in the survival kits of A-10, B-1, B-2, B-52, F-15C, F-15E, F-16 and F-22 aircraft.

The GAU-5A is being built and converted by the U.S. Air Force Gunsmith Shop at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas. In total, 2,137 weapons are expected to be fielded, Gibson said.

The weapon is being produced at a rate of 100 per week, but some weapons are already in use, stowed away on-board aircraft.

Prior to the introduction of this weapon system, pilots who found themselves in a downed-aircraft scenario were forced to rely on their personal sidearm for self defense.




Capt. Jason Morgan, 393rd Bomb Squadron B-2 Spirit pilot, radios in his location prior to his rescue during survival training at Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri. (Staff Sgt. Alexandra M. Boutte/Air Force)


Earlier this year, a Russian pilot’s Sukhoi-25 ground-attack aircraft was shot down over Idlib province in northwestern Syria. The pilot survived ejection, but died in an ensuing ground fight with Syrian rebels.

Such an event is rare given the lack of air-to-ground weapons used by insurgent forces in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan, but it does highlight the dangers these conflicts still pose to aircraft providing close-air support, particularly strafing runs, for friendly forces.

That danger was evidenced by a recent Distinguished Flying Cross citation for an A-10 pilot who dodged “accurate surface-to-air fire” while providing close air support for U.S. troops
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in January.

As the U.S. military prepares for an era of great power competition with more powerful state-level air forces, like those of Russia and China outlined in the
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, the threat to aircrews may be returning to the spotlight.
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Although not listed I suspect that both F35A and B21 will also be getting the Carbine eventually.
Based on what we see the GAU 5/A is based on the Mk18 a 10.3 inch barreled M4 carbine modified with a take down device. It will be placed inside the standard survival kit which is under the seat rest of the Ejection seat. The Standard currently used is for downed pilots to depend on a service side arm IE a pistol. but from time to time there have been attempts at giving downed pilots some more powerful options but they have not as yet really caught on.
Weapons like the HK MP7A1 would seem well suited to the job due to the small size , good potential for body armor penetration well retaining a good range vs a traditional SMG. Recently in operations in the middle east Dutch air crews are reported to have added the Mp9 to there survival kit. Before these there were other attempts at rifles for survival kits Most though focused more on the 4 legged threats to the pilots. Most combine a rifle and Shotgun to some degree some though are straight up ludicrous
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The US and Isreal also used other weapons like the M4 Survival rifle and AR7 in .22 Hornet and .22 Long Rifle. The Russian Cosmonaut corps used the TP82 a pistol form weapon with 28 gauge double barrels and a 5.45x39mm (AK74 round) barrel. but these left service and were for the Cosmonaut corps the main worry of these was the potential of Violent Animals, Yet the Middle east is shows the potential of Violent Humans.

Size has been though a major limitation. Even some amazingly compact weapons would be hard pressed to fit in the small dimensions. the Kit is under the seat of the Pilot it's General External dimensions are 19.96 inches from front to rear, 16.9 inches wide, 6.64 inches tall minus padding and and about 23 pounds. To put this in perspective the Mk18 on which the GAU-5/A seems based is 26.75 inches at it's most compact. A Soviet AKS74U with it's stock folded is 19.3 inches long. And Fn P90 is 19.9 inches long. So Squeezing a Rifle like the GAU-5/A is a bit of a trick.
 
May 16, 2018
the vid
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Published on May 15, 2018
now the news is
Bell's V-280 Tiltrotor Will Get Lockheed's New Long-Range Sensors
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Program officials at Bell, a contender in the
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's Future Vertical Lift program, will soon install a sophisticated sensor package on the V-280 Valor designed to ensure pilots know about enemy activity long before it's close enough to threaten the aircraft.

The Pilotage Distributed Aperture Sensor system, made by Lockheed Martin, is built to "provide 360-degree awareness around your aircraft via sensors," retired Army Maj. Gen. Jeff Schloesser, executive vice president for strategic pursuits at Bell, formerly known as Bell Helicopter, told Military.com.
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The company recently demonstrated the V-280 multi-role technology demonstrator platform's performance capabilities. The June 18
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came six months after the V-280's first test flight.

The V-280 tiltrotor -- produced by Textron Inc. and Bell -- is one of two demonstrator aircraft the service selected in 2014 to prove out new capabilities for Future Vertical Lift, an Army-led, joint program to create futuristic helicopters designed to far exceed the performance of existing aircraft such as the
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.

Sikorsky, part of Lockheed Martin Corp., and Boeing Co. built the SB>1 Defiant as the other technology demonstrator, but so far the Defiant has not conducted its first test flight.

"Long before Lockheed Martin bought Sikorsky, we had partnered with Lockheed Martin" on the Pilotage Distributed Aperture Sensor system, or PDAS, Schloesser said.

"It's a really unique capability and really exciting," he added. "If you've got a new car, you've probably got a TV camera in the back so when you back up you don't back into something.

"Think about if you could do that in an aircraft, so you can essentially see ... in all directions," Schloesser said. "Even as you are piloting up front, technically what you've got is a bulkhead behind you, but actually you are seeing through it because the system knows you are looking to the rear and then is using the backend sensor to tell you that's what is back there."

Lockheed's PDAS is similar to the Distributed Aperture System, or DAS -- made by Raytheon -- that is in use on the
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, said Paul Sudlow, a spokesman for Communications, Missiles and Fire Control, for Lockheed Martin. The PDAS system will also be incorporated into Sikorsky's SB>1 Defiant demonstrator, he added.

The PDAS is equipped with a sophisticated head-tracked helmet-mounted display that feeds pilots video from the 360-degree sensor devices, Sudlow said. Lockheed has demonstrated compatibility with the Army's current common helmet-mounted display system and other emerging helmet tech, he said.

The PDAS system will provide far more to pilots than just being able to view video from all around their aircraft, Schloesser said.

"Think about it as knowing 360. In other words, now to my right rear at five o'clock at 20 miles, there is a radar system that's emanating a pulse and to my left side ... there is a radio pulse coming from there that might be either hostile or whatever -- it's a continual mapping of the battlefield," he said.

"Every aircraft is going to need to be a sensor; every one of them is going to be able to be almost networked to provide a network of sensors out on the battlefield so you have a much better understanding of the situation on the ground," Schloesser said.

Over the next several months,
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, making sure it can meet its performance goals, he said.

The Valor has demonstrated that it can fly at 195 knots, but it will soon be able to reach a max speed of 280 knots, Schloesser said.

The V-280 is designed to fly an infantry squad on a 200-mile air assault mission and return to base without the need to refuel.
 
... but then Does it all have to be Billion dollar warships with you?
I've repeatedly said I generally post only about one-hundred-plus million programs (and only about a very small number of them, of course)

now this:
End of the day every thing from the carrier to the F35 to the Space Force is all there to support the most critical asset in a battle. The Grunt and his weapon.
is an important point, as an occupation decides if a war was a success or not; the word here is IRAQ
 

TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
The Problem with Iraq Jura was not the Soldiers it was the Strategy and actually trying to change things for the better as opposed to Glamour projects that looked good to the political actors but didn't fix actual issues on the ground and simply spread money around in hopes of paying people not to fight.
 

TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
Lockheed to double Patriot missile production as orders explode
By:
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  11 hours ago
WASHINGTON — Lockheed Martin is planning to double its
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in the coming years to deal with exploding orders of the weapon from the U.S. Army and its allies, according to a company executive.

The U.S. Army has dramatically increased its Patriot Advanced Capability-3 Missile Segment Enhancement, or PAC-3 MSE, orders to not just account for full-rate production of the missile but
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as operations overseas continue to eat up the inventory.

The
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has a larger, dual-pulse solid-rocket motor and larger control fins that double the missile’s reach and improve performance against evolving ballistic and cruise missiles.

Meanwhile, several new customers abroad have joined the ranks of Patriot air and missile defense owners to include
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,
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and
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this year. This includes the purchase of a number of the MSE missiles as part of the initial order.

For example, Lockheed would build 576 PAC-3 MSEs just for the three European countries that recently signed on to buy Patriot.

Romania plans to buy 168 PAC-3 MSEs for its Patriot system as part of its order. Poland wants to buy 208 of them. Sweden intends to buy 200.

The reason for such an explosion in PAC-3 MSE buys is due to the proliferating threat both in the Middle East and in Europe as the U.S. and its allies remain embroiled in conflict in the Gulf region, and as European countries work to build up robust air defenses to deter Russia.

A comparison of the U.S. Army’s fiscal 2018 and fiscal 2019 budget justification documents show the service drastically increased its planned buys — in some cases more than doubling — across FY18 through FY22.

The Army had planned to buy roughly 95 missiles per year from FY18 through FY22, but a year later the service increased the 2018 order from 93 to 240 to include those bought with overseas contingency operations funds. In FY19, the Army asked for 240 missiles again. And the base orders for the missile in FY21 and FY22 total 160 each year.

The Army’s plans to dramatically increase its PAC-3 MSE production going forward has seen unanimous congressional approval, although the final FY19 defense appropriations bill has yet to become law. House and Senate appropriators are fully funding the production of 179 MSE missiles in FY19 in the base budget.

Lockheed is no longer selling its original PAC-3 missiles, but it is still producing them for one customer, according to Bob Delgado, director of international business development for integrated air and missile defense at Lockheed Martin, who spoke to Defense News in a recent interview at the defense conference Eurosatory in Paris.

This means Lockheed can make room for PAC-3 MSE production, which received the go-ahead to move into full-rate production by the U.S. Army in April.

“There is a lot of interest in [PAC-3 MSE], so much so we are doubling our capacity,” which equates to up to 500 of the missiles per year, Delgado said. This will likely mean adding an extra production line, he added.

Lockheed is currently meeting the demand, Delgado said, “however, it is getting more difficult as more orders come in, and that is why we are foreseeing, along with the U.S. government, a point where we need to increase our capacity.”

Lockheed expects to reach this capacity level within the next few years, he said, and the company could always build out to an even higher production capacity.

It also believed, according to a hint during a Raytheon earnings call earlier this year, that at least one more country that is not yet a Patriot customer will be taking steps to buy the system sometime this year, which could mean even more PAC-3 MSE orders for Lockheed.
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vague to the point of a farce PEO Ships: Future Surface Combatant Hull Still Undecided, But Will Use Flight III DDG-51 Combat System
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The Navy’s vision of what its next large surface combatant will look like still remains unclear, but that future hull will almost certainly run the DDG-51 Flight III’s combat system, the Program Executive Officer for Ships said today.

Rear Adm. William Galinis said today that the PEO, along with the surface warfare directorate at the Pentagon and other stakeholders, is “still in the very very early stages of concept development” on the large combatant piece of the Future Surface Combatant family of systems.

Despite the Navy’s preference towards using mature parent designs for new programs – like the ongoing frigate competition’s requirement to have a parent design, and leveraging the San Antonio-class LPD design for the LX(R) program – Galinis said no decisions have been made as to whether the Navy would want to use an existing design for its next large combatant, or if a useful design even exists.

What is clear at this point, though, is that “the initial concepts start with a DDG-51 Flight III combat system, and we build off of that. Probably bringing in a new [hull, mechanical and electrical] infrastructure and a new power architecture to support that combat system.”

Speaking at a Navy League breakfast this morning, the rear admiral said the decision to start with the Flight III combat system, which includes the new AN/SPY-6(V) Air and Missile Defense Radar (AMDR), was based on how technology and global threats are expected to evolve. The combat system could support future weapons such as laser guns, which Galinis said was where technology is headed, though he stopped short of saying definitively that the next large surface combatant would include directed energy technology.

As for the Arleigh Burke-class hull, Galinis said some upgrades were made in the Flight III design – improved damage stability in case the ship were to take a hit, for example – but the Navy isn’t sure how much more that hull can do before hitting its architectural limits. For example, the Navy has tested a laser weapon system on an old amphibious ship that was converted into an afloat staging base, and is set to test the next iteration of the
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to test the next laser gun after evaluating ship classes on their cooling, power, air conditioning, space and weight margins.

“Do we use the DDG-51 hull form and maybe expand that? Do we go with a new hull form? Power architecture is a key part of this, again, as we start thinking about future combat systems, directed energy systems. How does that play into it? So those are the conversations that we’re having right now on the requirements side,” Galinis said.

The service is still wrestling with some fundamental questions ahead of beginning industry engagement, which may happen as early as later this year: “can we stay with the more traditional mechanical drive system with larger generators, or do we really make that transition to an integrated electric plant? And then at some point probably bring in energy storage magazines of some sort to support directed energy weapons?”

The
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– like a cruiser or destroyer, though the Navy is being careful not to use either label for this upcoming ship – a small combatant that would replace the Littoral Combat Ship and frigate, an unmanned surface ship, and
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. PEO Ships will oversee the development and acquisition of the large combatant, and PEO Unmanned and Small Combatants (formerly PEO LCS) will handle the other three.

The Future Surface Combatant initial capabilities document has been signed out by Navy leadership and is pending Joint Staff approval, Galinis said.
 
BAE Systems has delivered all of the AMPVs built under the Engineering and Manufacturing Design (EMD) phase to the U.S. Army to begin the testing phase of the program.

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...
... related news:
BAE Howitzer Production Flawed as Army Readies $1.3 Billion Buy
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  • Full-rate production of new weapon may be approved by Army
  • Poor welding and delivery delays cited by contract agency
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’s manufacture of the U.S. Army’s new howitzer is hobbled by poor welding, supply chain problems and delivery delays even as the service nears a $1.3 billion decision on full production, according to the Pentagon’s contract management agency.

Among the setbacks have been a six-month halt in deliveries last year because of welding flaws and the return of 50 of 86 vehicles that had already been delivered due to repair production deficiencies.

Nevertheless, Army officials plan to meet on Thursday to decide on approval of full-rate production, the most lucrative phase for London-based BAE. That would trigger $1.3 billion in contract options and increase vehicle production to about 60 from 48 a year, according to a Pentagon program assessment.

The Pentagon’s Defense Contract Management Agency “assesses that BAE is currently experiencing significant supply-chain, part quality and delivery issues,” spokesman Mark Woodbury said in an email. “DCMA’s assessment has been shared with” the Army and “could potentially aid the program office’s final decision to proceed” to full-rate production, he said.

Not Delaying
But Ashley Givens, an Army spokeswoman, said “we are not considering delaying” the review. “BAE’s current production/quality issues will be discussed during the meeting. We expect BAE to deliver vehicles in accordance with the contract no matter the rate of production.” She said BAE has “implemented process improvements that are expected to address the recent quality problems.”

The Army has oversight of the program and its key milestones, but Ellen Lord, the undersecretary for acquisition and sustainment, “is concerned that current production problems” at the BAE’s facility in York, Pennsylvania, “could impact performance and delivery on other combat vehicle programs,” a spokesman, Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Michael Andrews, said in an email.

The Pentagon office charged with analyzing program performance “is completing an independent assessment to advise” Army acquisition officials before full-rate production, he said.

Eventual $8.1 Billion
The Army eventually wants to buy
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and ammunition carriers in an $8.1 billion program.

“BAE Systems has a rigorous inspection process to ensure we deliver the highest quality products to the customer,” company spokeswoman Alicia Gray said in an email.

The contractor’s Paladin Integrated Management system is made up of the self-propelled M109A6 howitzer and an accompanying vehicle that carries stores of ammunition. It’s a key element in the Army’s “long-range precision strike” program, which tops the service’s list of modernization priorities.

BAE received its
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. An initial $413.7 million contract laying the groundwork for full production was awarded in December.

A Defense Department corporate assessment of BAE in May said the “continuing production challenges pose a risk” to meeting the howitzer program’s September 2020 target date to be fully combat-ready.

‘Minor Discrepancies’
BAE’s Gray said the company performed a detailed inspection of all vehicles in July 2017 “and modified aspects of our welding practices.” The changes “do not impact our weld processes, and the minor discrepancies identified do not materially impact the vehicles,” she said in an email.

The Army’s return of 50 already-delivered howitzers called for reinspection because of undercut or undersized welds and a “lack of fusion,” according to the Defense Contract Management Agency. The recall and ongoing repairs have caused delays to BAE’s current delivery schedules that won’t get back on track until February 2019, it said.

BAE’s factory quality is a priority for the Army because it wants to increase production through 2023, not only for the howitzer system but also the other major vehicles BAE builds: the Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle, the Bradley Fighting Vehicle and the M88A2 tank recovery vehicle. The Army plans to surge production of the Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle for deployment to Europe as part of the U.S.’s deterrence buildup against Russia.

Sections of the howitzers are initially produced at BAE’s York facility with final assembly in Elgin, Oklahoma. The howitzer program has a strong advocate in Senator Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma, the No. 2 Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee. In its version of the fiscal 2019 defense policy bill, the panel authorized spending $110 million more than the $351.8 million requested.

BAE Systems “has a strong capital investment strategy that prepares our facilities to handle current and future workloads,” Gray said. “We share our current and future plans with the DOD and the Army to help them understand the capacity of our manufacturing network, to include our production site in York and other BAE Systems sites, as well as the supplier base.”

She said the company is investing “approximately $125 million in upgrading equipment in our various manufacturing facilities to be prepared for an expanded production portfolio and accommodate the expected surge in customer requirements.”
 
interesting from both the military and PR viewpoints is
Essex Amphibious Ready Group Quietly Deployed on Tuesday with Marine F-35s
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The three-ship Essex Amphibious Ready Group and the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit left San Diego, Calif., on Tuesday with little fanfare for an expected Western Pacific and Middle East deployment, a defense official confirmed to USNI News on Thursday.

The big deck USS Essex (LHD-2), amphibious transport dock USS Anchorage (LPD-23) and dock landing ship USS Rushmore (LSD-47) departed for an routine deployment with a squadron of Marine F-35B Lighting II Joint Strike Fighters from the Wake Island Avengers” of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 211, the official confirmed to USNI News.

“The Essex Amphibious Ready Group with embarked 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit got underway from San Diego, Tuesday,” Pacific Fleet spokesman Capt. Charlie Brown said in a Thursday statement to USNI News. “For reasons of operational security, we are not publicly disclosing any additional details.”

The deployment is the first for Marine Joint Strike Fighters from the U.S., following a short float of Japan-based “Green Knights” of VMFA-121 on the forward-deployed amphibious warship USS Wasp (LHD-1) in March.

The Marine F-35Bs aboard Essex are set to bring a drastically expanded set of capabilities to the ARG/MEU beyond the more-than-30-year-old design of the AV-8B Harrier II that makes up the bulk of the Marines’ strike inventory.

“With the new aircraft, we want to be able to capitalize on all the capability that aircraft has to bear, like multi-functional data links, how do we get that information from that airplane to the ship so we can use it,” Capt. Gerald Olin, Amphibious Squadron 1 commander and commodore of
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. “That also gives me additional command-and-control capability.”

While the Marines have widely publicized the F-35Bs on Essex, the departure of the ARG/MEU was not announced publicly before the ships left San Diego. Typically, the service alerts media in advance of deployments for those interested in covering the departure events, as well as sends a separate announcement once the ships formally deploy. Numerous social media posts on Facebook and Twitter – posted by private citizens, not military-affiliated accounts – showed sailors and Marines manning the rails of the ships of the ARG as they departed San Diego.

The decision to not announce the departure of the about 5,000 sailors and Marines were made at the discretion of the new U.S. Pacific Fleet commander Adm. John Aquilino, two sources familiar with the behind-the-scenes conversations on the preparations told USNI News on Thursday. The communications move was designed to change the expectations on what information the public could expect when ships in the Pacific area of operations deploy, the sources told USNI News.

A San Diego-based Navy official would not confirm to USNI News when called on Thursday if Essex was in port, citing a new Pacific Fleet policy that was not elaborated on.
 
Thursday at 12:05 PM
vague to the point of a farce PEO Ships: Future Surface Combatant Hull Still Undecided, But Will Use Flight III DDG-51 Combat System
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related:
US Navy’s surface ship program head confident on meeting 355-ship goal
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The head of the U.S. Navy’s surface ship program office says the service will be able to meet the
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.

Rear Adm. William Galinis told industry representatives at a Navy League breakfast Wednesday that congressional investment in shipbuilding and the service life extension of aging vessels will allow the Navy to meet the target.

Congress has been “very generous to the Navy, and to shipbuilding in particular” he said. Galinis noted $100 billion worth of shipbuilding work across different program offices, with 35 ships currently in construction or on contract.

Keeping
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through repairs and maintenance will be a key part of fleet expansion, Galinis noted. “It is a very solid strategy,” he said, adding that upgrades can yield “five to 10 more years” of service depending on the ship class.

Casting aside doubts on the feasibility of using ships whose service life have been extended, Galinis pointed to the DDG−53 launched in 1991 and the DDG−113 launched in 2015. “We’ve demonstrated the DDG−53 can almost have the same capabilities as DDG−113 through repairs," he said, “and we’ve done a pretty good job at that.”

Galinis also previewed upcoming major shipbuilding projects for the Navy, including the first
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in cooperation with the U.S. Coast Guard, expected to be awarded early next year, and the future large surface combatant design for a new era of
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.

“Our next big effort is the large surface combatant” said Galinis. Although it is in the "early stages of concept development, expect before the end of this year we will start reaching out to industry to share thoughts and feedback.”
 

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