“The Navy is moving forward with the formal process outlined in the FY22 NDAA to approve the five Ticonderoga-class Cruiser hulls that will decommission in Fiscal Year 2022,” reads a Navy statement. “The Navy will share the specific hull numbers and plans for the decommissionings as the information is available for release.”
In July, the Navy’s most recent decommissioning memo identified seven ships, two of which were to leave the service in February – Norfolk, Va.,-based USS Vella Gulf (CG-72) and USS Monterey (CG-61).
Vella Gulf was stuck pier-side for two months after the crew discovered a leaking fuel tank while underway shortly after the deployment began. The issue became a visible example of the maintenance issues in the class. Monterey came back from an independent deployment after supporting the Eisenhower CSG in September.
The other ships that were earmarked to leave fleet by April, per the advisory, were USS Lake Champlain (CG-57), USS Hué City (CG-66) USS Anzio (CG-68), USS Port Royal (CG-73). The currently deployed USS San Jacinto (CG-56) was set to decommission at the end of its deployment.
The Navy has 22 cruisers in the battle force that have been part of an extended maintenance plan for the last decade that sought to preserve the cruiser capability for the carrier strike group.
The service’s primary reason to keep the cruisers well past their service lives is to support the air defense commander of the carrier strike group and their staff, as well as the additional vertical launch cell capacity to add to the guided-missile destroyers with the CSG. More than a decade ago, the Pentagon deemed the Navy’s previous attempt to build a replacement cruiser as too expensive. Instead, the Navy developed the Flight III version of the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer that will fill in as the platform for the air defense commander, USNI News understands.
Extending the life of the cruisers is proving expensive and taking much longer than scheduled, Navy leaders have stressed to Congress.
“The cruisers right now and the modernization are running 175 to 200 percent above estimated costs, hundreds of days delay. These ships were intended to have a 30-year service life, we’re out to 35,” Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday told the House Armed Services Committee last year.
The Navy is clear to decommission five Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruisers following the passage of the Fiscal Year 2022 defense appropriations bill, USNI News understands. The overdue spending bill follows the FY 2022 defense policy bill and allows the Navy to decommission five of the...
Navy to Christen Guided-Missile Destroyer Jack H. Lucas March 26, 2022
The Navy will christen the future USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG 125), the first Flight III Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, during a 9:55 a.m. CDT ceremony on Saturday, March 26, in Pascagoula, Mississippi.
Jacklyn Harold “Jack” Lucas, the ship's namesake, served as a U.S. Marine during World War II and was awarded the Medal of Honor at the age of 17, making him the youngest recipient. Private First Class Lucas received the award during the Iwo Jima campaign when he hurled himself on two grenades to absorb the explosion with his own body and protect his fellow Marines. Surviving the blast, Lucas lived until June 5, 2008, when he died from cancer. The future USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG 125) is the first combat warship to bear his name.
Admiral Michael Gilday, Chief of Naval Operations, will deliver the christening ceremony's principal address. The Honorable Roger Wicker, U.S. Sen. from Mississippi; the Honorable Steven Palazzo, U.S. Rep. from Mississippi’s Fourth District; the Honorable Meredith Berger, Performing the Duties of the Under Secretary of the Navy; Major General Jason Bohm, Commanding General, Marine Corps Recruiting Command; and Ms. Kari Wilkinson, President of Ingalls Shipbuilding will also provide remarks. In a time-honored Navy tradition, the ship’s sponsors, Ms. Ruby Lucas and Ms. Catherine B. Reynolds, will christen the ship by breaking a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow.
"The future USS Jack H. Lucas will serve as a constant reminder of the immense impact actions taken by any one Sailor or Marine can truly have,” said Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro. “Private First Class Lucas is a national hero and this ship and crew will honor his legacy for decades to come.”
The ship will be the 73rd Arleigh Burke-class destroyer and is one of 20 ships currently under contract for the DDG 51 program.
The Flight III upgrade is centered on the AN/SPY-6(V)1 Air and Missile Defense Radar (AMDR). It incorporates upgrades to the electrical power and cooling capacity plus additional associated changes to provide greatly enhanced warfighting capability to the fleet. The AMDR enables Flight III ships to perform Anti-Air Warfare and Ballistic Missile Defense simultaneously, satisfying the Navy's critical need for an enhanced surface combatant Integrated Air and Missile Defense (IAMD) capability.
The Flight III baseline begins with DDGs 125-126 and continues with DDG 128 and follow on ships.
The future USS Jack H. Lucas will be 509.5 feet long and 59 feet wide, with a displacement of 9,496 tons. The ship will homeport in San Diego, California.
The DDG 51 Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer (DDG 51) is a multi-mission ship designed to operate offensively and defensively, independently, or part of Carrier Strike Groups, Expeditionary Strike Groups, and Surface Action Groups in multi-threat environments that include air, surface and subsurface threats. These ships will respond to Low Intensity Conflict/Coastal and Littoral Offshore Warfare scenarios, and open ocean conflict, providing or augmenting power projection, forward presence requirements and escort operations at sea. Flight III is the fourth Flight upgrade in the 30+ year history of the class, building on the proud legacy of Flight I, II and IIA ships before it.
(…) Following an announcement earlier this week that the Navy would cancel a key anti-submarine warfare effort bound for the Littoral Combat Ship, the service today also said it would replace that technology with an alternative system onboard the new Constellation-class frigate.
Rear Adm. Casey Moton, a senior officer overseeing both ship classes, told a small group of reporters that “following an assessment,” the Navy chose the CAPTAS-4 variable depth sonar (VDS) made by Advanced Acoustics Concepts, a subsidiary of DRS and Thales, as the new frigate VDS. (…)