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RISING SUN

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Basically, Carrier Strike Group 4 Is Jamming GPS Across U.S. Southeast Coast
“AOPA estimates that more than 2,000 airports—home bases to more than 28,600 aircraft—are located within the area’s lowest airspace contour.”

GPS has become increasingly important to our lives. Not only do Waze, Uber, and many other applications heavily rely on global positioning system. Our cellular networks rely on GPS clocks, banking systems, financial markets, and power grids all depend on GPS for precise time synchronization. In the finance sector, GPS-derived timing allows for ATM, credit cards transactions to be timestamped. Computer network synchronization, digital TV and radio, as well as IoT (Internet of Things) applications also rely on GPS-clock and geo-location services.

In an operational environment jamming GPS signals represents both a threat and an important capability. In addition to serving an important purpose in navigation on land, sea and in the air, GPS also provides targeting capability for precision weapons along with many other tactical and strategic purposes.

For this reason, the U.S. military frequently trains to deny or degrade GPS signals on a large-scale. In 2017, we went inside Nellis AFB to get a firsthand demonstration of how easy and how quickly the U.S. Air Force can jam GPS signals for training purposes.

For instance, the U.S. Navy’s CSG-4, that “mentors, trains and assesses Atlantic Fleet combat forces to forward deploy in support and defense of national interests”, is currently conducting GPS Interference testing in the East Coast area. As an FAA NOTAM (Notice To Airmen), issued for airspace in eight of the FAA’s Air Route Traffic Control Centers, warns, GPS could be degraded from Caribbean and Florida north to Pennsylvania west to the eastern Louisiana, while the tests are conducted Feb. 6 – 10, at different hours.

GPS-based services including Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B), the Ground Based Augmentation System, and the Wide Area Augmentation System, could be unreliable or lost in a radius extending several hundred miles from the offshore operation’s center, the FAA said.

In 2017, we went inside Nellis AFB to get a firsthand demo from member of the 527th Space Aggressor Squadron (527th SAS) who showed us how easy and how quickly the U.S. Air Force can jam GPS signals for training purposes: in only a few seconds members of the 527th SAS used commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) equipment to jam local GPS reception making many public services unavailable.

This is not the first time such GPS-denial operations take place. It has already happened on the West Coast in 2016 and, more recently, on the East Coast, at the end of August 2018:

As happened in all the previous operations, we really don’t know which kind of system is being used to jam GPS. However, it must be an embarked system, considered that the source of the jamming is a location off the coast of Georgia, centered at 313339N0793740W or the CHS (Charleston AFB) VOR 173 degree radial at 83NM (Nautical Miles).

As mentioned, not only the military is so heavily reliant on GPS.

AOPA estimates that more than 2,000 airports—home bases to more than 28,600 aircraft—are located within the area’s lowest airspace contour. The East Coast test is “unacceptably widespread and potentially hazardous,” said Rune Duke, AOPA senior director of airspace, air traffic and aviation security, in an article on AOPA website.

Here’s another interesting excerpt from the same article that provides examples of how the GPS testing has affected general aviation:

A safety panel held in September 2018 ended with the FAA deadlocked on a path forward. In November 2018, AOPA reported on instances of aircraft losing GPS navigation signals during testing—and in several cases, veering off course. Instances have been documented in which air traffic control temporarily lost the tracks of ADS-B Out-equipped aircraft.
In a vivid example of direct hazard to aircraft control in April 2016, an Embraer Phenom 300 business jet entered a Dutch roll and an emergency descent after its yaw damper disengaged; the aircraft’s dual attitude and heading reference systems had reacted differently to the GPS signal outage. This issue was subsequently corrected for this aircraft.
AOPA is aware of hundreds of reports of interference to aircraft during events for which notams were issued, and the FAA has collected many more in the last year. In one example that came to AOPA’s attention, an aircraft lost navigation capability and did not regain it until after landing. During a GPS-interference event in Alaska, an aircraft departed an airport under IFR and lost GPS on the initial climb. Other reports have highlighted aircraft veering off course and heading toward active military airspace. The wide range of reports makes clear that interference affects aircraft differently, and recovery may not occur immediately after the aircraft exits the jammed area.
Pilot concern is mounting. In a January 2019 AOPA survey, more than 64 percent of 1,239 pilots who responded noted concern about the impact of interference on their use of GPS and ADS-B. (In some cases, pilots who reported experiencing signal degradation said ATC had been unaware the jamming was occurring.)​
Interestingly, “stop buzzer” is the code word, pilots may radio to the ATC when testing affects GPS navigation or causes flight control issues:

Pilots who encounter hazardous interruption of GPS navigation or who have flight-control issues should be aware that they can say the phrase “Stop buzzer” to air traffic control, which initiates the process of interrupting the testing to restore navigation signal reception, Duke said.
During previous GPS-interference events, pilots declared emergencies, but the jamming continued because ATC did not understand that the emergency was related to the GPS interference. According to the Pilot/Controller Glossary, “stop buzzer” is a term used by ATC to request suspension of “electronic attack activity.” Pilots should only use the phrase when communicating with ATC, or over the emergency frequency 121.5 MHz, if a safety-of-flight issue is encountered during a known GPS interference event. Using this unique phrase when experiencing an unsafe condition related to GPS interference will ensure that ATC and the military react appropriately by stopping the jamming, Duke said.
“Pilots should only say ‘stop buzzer’ when something unsafe is occurring that warrants declaring an emergency. They should make sure ATC knows that the emergency is GPS-related and that halting the GPS interference will resolve the emergency,” he said.​
Despite the complaints from the civilian side, dominating the GPS “domain” is crucial to win. Consequently, along with the periodic testing like the one underway in the U.S. southeastern coast, GPS jamming has become a common operation of the most recent Red Flag exercises that include simulated scenarios where warfighters train to operate in an environment where electronic and cyber-attacks may disable GPS capability.
Basically, Carrier Strike Group 4 Is Jamming GPS Across U.S. Southeast Coast
 
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A Person

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Years of Warnings, Then Death and Disaster: How the Navy Failed Its Sailors

Long, but very interesting article about the US Pacific Fleet. Excerpt:
Two days after the McCain crashed, Aucoin sat in the front row of the base movie theater in Yokosuka, the same place the Navy had memorialized the Fitzgerald sailors just nine weeks earlier. He had gathered hundreds of top officers and enlisted sailors for what the military calls a “safety stand down.” Operations stop for a day and the focus is turned to discussing what went wrong.​
Back in Washington, members of Congress were demanding action after a second historically deadly Navy accident in as many months.​
In the theater, Aucoin’s assistant got his attention. He needed to check The Wall Street Journal.​
“Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin, the three-star commander of the U.S. Seventh Fleet in Yokosuka, Japan, will be relieved of command on Wednesday…,” the story read.​
Aucoin knew Swift was scheduled to arrive in about 90 minutes. He rushed from the theater and fired off a blunt email to the Navy’s top military leader: His warnings had been routinely ignored, and he didn’t appreciate learning from a newspaper that he was to be fired.​
When Swift arrived at Aucoin’s office, he sank into the couch. Both men began crying, Aucoin recalled. Swift told him that if he hadn’t fired Aucoin, he’d have been the one under fire.​
“They should be looking at you,” Aucoin said he responded.​
No commanders ranked higher than Aucoin were fired.​
Swift did not get a promotion and retired. He is now a visiting scholar at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.​
Swift’s deputy, Sawyer, who Aucoin said did not respond to his warnings, took over Aucoin’s command.​
Rowden, who succeeded Copeman and worried aloud to Janine Davidson, was forced to retire at a lower rank.​
The four-star admiral in charge of setting the ships’ manpower levels, Phil Davidson, was allowed to write the Navy’s report on the systemic problems that contributed to the collisions. He was then promoted.​

In other words, the people who repeatedly warned of the problems with lack of readiness, lack of training, crew exhaustion were blamed for the two accidents that killed 17 sailors and fired; the people responsible for these problems in the first place were promoted.
 

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BAE Systems to modernize USS Bulkeley

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BMD

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The U.S. Navy Just Bought Four Giant, Robot Submarines from Boeing

The U.S. Navy Just Bought Four Giant, Robot Submarines from Boeing


David Axe

,
The National InterestFebruary 15, 2019

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David Axe

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Orca could help to fill a yawning gap in the American submarine fleet. In December 2016, the U.S. Navy announced it needed 66 nuclear-powered attack subs, or SSNs, to meet regional commanders' needs.
The U.S. Navy Just Bought Four Giant, Robot Submarines from Boeing

The U.S. Navy has ordered from Boeing four huge robotic submarines, potentially signally an effort to deploy a large number of crewless undersea boats alongside traditional, manned submarines.

The Navy's $43-million purchase of four Orca Extra Large Unmanned Undersea Vehicles, or XLUUVs, comes as the fleet struggles to build enough new manned submarines to replace older vessels that are decommissioning as their nuclear cores wear out.

"Boeing based its winning Orca XLUUV design on its Echo Voyager unmanned diesel-electric submersible," Ben Werner explained at USNI News.

"The 51-foot-long submersible is launched from a pier and can operate autonomously while sailing up to 6,500 nautical miles without being connected to a manned mother ship, according to the Navy," Werner continued.

"Eventually, the Navy could also use the Orca XLUUV for mine countermeasures, anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, electronic warfare and strike missions," according to a Navy outline of the system’s capability development.

Orca features an open-architecture design. The robotic sub "will be modular in construction with the core vehicle providing guidance and control, navigation, autonomy, situational awareness, core communications, power distribution, energy and power, propulsion and maneuvering and mission sensors," Seapower quoted the Navy as stating.

"The Orca XLUUV will have well-defined interfaces for the potential of implementing cost-effective upgrades in future increments to leverage advances in technology and respond to threat changes."

Orca could help to fill a yawning gap in the American submarine fleet. In December 2016, the U.S. Navy announced it needed 66 nuclear-powered attack subs, or SSNs, to meet regional commanders' needs. But in early 2019 it had just 51 attack boats.

The U.S. Navy in recent years has been buying new Virginia-class attack submarines at a rate of two per year, hoping to mitigate an attack-sub shortfall during the mid-2020s. But the attack-sub force still could decline to a low of 42 in 2028 as old Los Angeles-class boats leave the fleet in large numbers.

"Where we sit today is, we can’t build ships and deliver them in time to fill in that dip," Vice Adm. Bill Merz, a deputy chief of naval operations, told U.S. senators.

While American submarines are more sophisticated than are most subs belonging to rival fleets, there might be too few U.S. boats to, say, quickly respond to a Chinese invasion of Taiwan.

As recently as 2013, the U.S. Navy could deploy on short notice no more than eight attack submarines to the western Pacific, according to Adm. Cecil Haney, then the commander of Pacific Fleet submarines.

Moreover, U.S. subs on average are around 400 feet long and displace around 6,000 tons, making them too big for operations in shallow, crowded waters such as those of the Taiwan Strait.

In early 2019 China possessed around 50 diesel-powered attack submarines, or SSKs, and six nuclear-powered attack subs and was on track to add several more boats by 2020, the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency reported in February 2019.

The People's Liberation Army Navy included 17 of the latest Yuan-class boatswith air-independent propulsion, or AIP. A Yuan boat is around 250 feet long and displaces around 2,500 tons of water.

"It is conceivable that an adept PLAN submarine captain ... could take advantage the Yuan’s shallow draft and wedge the SSK into a difficult-to-access channel or maritime feature, and thereby forcing higher-technology SSNs to fight on unfavorable terrain whose geography and acoustic signatures favor the defender," Henry Holst explained in an essay for the U.S. Naval Institute.

An Orca is even smaller than a Yuan is. Assuming the U.S. Navy can refine the robotic boat's command-and-control systems, artificial intelligence, sensors and weapons, in theory the Orca could become a capable shallow-water fighter.

Not coincidentally, the U.S. Navy also is eyeing robotic vessels to bolster the surface fleet. Cheaper to build than today ship's are and expendable, unmanned surface warships could help the Navy quickly to grow -- and could allow the fleet to develop new tactics for battling a high-tech foe.

"Part of the value of having unmanned surface vehicles is you can get capacity at a lower cost," Rear Adm. John Neagley, the Navy’s executive for unmanned and small warships, told Breaking Defense.

The same applies to the undersea fleet.
 
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RISING SUN

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Two Flights Defined Hornet’s Service
The aircraft carrier Hornet (CV 8) served for just 372 days, her short lifespan reflective of the fact that she put to sea in dangerous waters.


USS Hornet (CV 8) Painting
Gordon Grant, 1942, U.S. Navy Photo


During that brief time, it can be said two distinct flights defined the service of the Navy’s eighth aircraft carrier before she slipped beneath the waves at the Battle of Santa Cruz on Oct. 27, 1942. Both represented the heroic spirit of the nation, flying against all odds in the pivotal first months of the Pacific War.

One involved men in Army Air Forces green, who never imagined they would ever see an aircraft carrier much less fly from one. The other consisted of naval personnel at home on a wooden flight deck amidst saltwater spray. Less than two months apart and separated by thousands of miles, the flights of the Doolittle Raiders and Torpedo Squadron (VT) 8 stand as defining moments of World War II.

Though he only stood five feet, four inches tall, Lt. Col. James H. Doolittle was a giant of aviation during aviation’s “Golden Age” prior to World War II, receiving nationwide acclaim as a record-setting test and racing pilot. When a plan emerged in early 1942 to use Army Air Forces B-25 Mitchell bombers launched from an aircraft carrier to strike Japan, Doolittle was a natural choice to lead the mission, the confidence of the crews selected to fly the airplanes was bolstered knowing an officer of his capabilities was leading them.


Lieutenant Colonel James H. Doolittle (left front), leader of the attacking force, and Captain Marc A. Mitscher, Commanding Officer of USS Hornet (CV-8), pose with a 500-pound bomb and USAAF aircrew members during ceremonies on Hornet’s flight deck, while the raid task force was en route to the launching point. U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command

Timing brought Hornet into the operation. Following completion of her shakedown cruise in January 1942, the carrier returned to Norfolk, only to put to sea again in February, her flight deck devoid of her usual assortment of Navy planes and instead host to a pair of B-25s. Their successful launches from the carrier off the Virginia coast proved the concept and took Hornet through the Panama Canal to Naval Air Station (NAS) Alameda, California, where sixteen B-25s were loaded on board, their crews having trained at Eglin Field near NAS Pensacola, Florida. This included instruction on short take-off procedures under the tutelage of a Navy flight instructor, LT Henry Miller. After the carrier had put to sea, her skipper, Captain Marc A. Mitscher, announced to the crew that their mission was to launch the bombers against Japan.


USAAF B-25B bombers tied down on the flight deck of USS Hornet (CV-8), while the carrier was en route to the mission’s launching point. The view looks aft from the rear of Hornet’s island. The plane in the foreground is tail # 40-2203 (mission plane # 9). Partially visible at far right is tail # 40-2250 (mission plane # 10). Piloted respectively by Second Lieutenants Harold F. Watson and Richard O. Joyce, these B-25s attacked targets in the Tokyo area. U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

On April 18, 1942, in the waters off Japan, Hornet turned into the wind and prepared to launch airplanes, the action occurring earlier than anticipated after a Japanese picket boat spotted Hornet and the carrier Enterprise (CV 6), which was providing air cover, and escorting ships.

“The engines of three other ships [B-25 Mitchell bombers] were warming up, and the thump and hiss of the turbulent sea made additional noise,” remembered Doolittle Raider Capt. Ted Lawson. “But loud and clear above those sounds I could hear the hoarse cheers of every Navy man on the ship. They made the Hornet fairly shudder with their yells—and I’ve never heard anything like it, before or since.”


An Army Air Force B-25B bomber takes off from USS Hornet (CV-8) at the start of the raid, 18 April 1942. Note men watching from the signal lamp platform at right. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.

Later that day, Hornet picked up English language radio broadcasts from Tokyo. “Enemy bombers appeared over Tokyo today shortly after noon for the first time in the current East Asia War. Heavy and telling damage was inflicted on schools and hospitals, and the populace shows much indignation.”

While the mention of schools and hospitals was propaganda, the indignation of the Japanese over the appearance of U.S. aircraft over the Home Islands was true. One result was the advancing of the timetable for an operation designed to draw the U.S. Navy’s aircraft carriers into a sea battle in the waters around a small Pacific atoll called Midway.


This infographic shares the history of the Doolittle Raid – how America struck back after Pearl Harbor. (U.S. Navy graphic by Annalisa Underwood/Released)

Turning the Tide of the War in the Pacific

Returning to Pearl Harbor on April 25, 1942, the crew of Hornet had just a few days in port before Pacific Fleet commander Adm. Chester W. Nimitz ordered her and Enterprise to sea with their escorts to counter a Japanese offensive in the South Pacific. While en route, the carriers Lexington (CV 2) and Yorktown (CV 5) already operating there engaged Japanese carriers at the Battle of the Coral Sea, the first engagement in naval history fought entirely by aircraft, the surface ships of the opposing fleets never coming within sight of each other. Lexington was sunk and Yorktown heavily damaged during the battle, the latter ordered back to Pearl Harbor along with Enterprise and Hornet to prepare to counter the Japanese offensive against Midway, the plans for which were being revealed through the work of Navy intelligence.


Underway in the Southern Pacific, 15 May 1942, a week after the Battle of Coral Sea and the day before she was recalled to Pearl Harbor to prepare for the Battle of Midway. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.

On May 28, as part of Task Force 16 with Enterprise and escorts, Hornet departed Pearl Harbor with the mission to “prevent enemy attack and occupation of Midway.” Task Force 17 consisting of Yorktown and her escorts followed later, the three carriers and land-based aircraft on Midway Atoll engaging the Japanese June 3–6, 1942, in what became known as the Battle of Midway. Before the battle began acclaimed Hollywood filmmaker John Ford, serving as a Naval Reserve officer, visited Hornet and shot color film of the members of VT-8, little knowing that it would serve as a memorial for the squadron.

Though PBY Catalinas attacked Japanese ships on the night of June 3, the events of the following day proved the most significant of the pivotal battle. Another PBY on patrol spotted the Japanese striking force, prompting Enterprise, Hornet, and Yorktown to launch their aircraft to seek out and sink the enemy force’s flattops. Leading VT-8 was squadron commander LCDR John Waldron, who in the ready room that morning told his pilots he intended to press home their attack even if the squadron was alone and outnumbered.


SBD Dauntless dive bombers from USS Hornet (CV-8) approaching the burning Japanese heavy cruiser Mikuma to make the third set of attacks on her, during the early afternoon of 6 June 1942. Mikuma had been hit earlier by strikes from Hornet and USS Enterprise (CV-6), leaving her dead in the water and fatally damaged. Photo was enlarged from a 16mm color motion picture film. Note bombs hung beneath these planes. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.

Once airborne, believing the course set by the Hornet Air Group’s commander was erroneous, Waldron broke formation and led VT-8 on a more southwesterly course. His assessment proved accurate as his navigation led him right to the enemy carriers. What happened then was captured in a report based on an interview with VT-8’s ENS George Gay. Approaching the enemy ships low and slow as they lugged 1,000-lb. torpedoes, the squadron was approximately 16,000 yards away when attacks by Japanese Zero fighters commenced from above, the enemy pilots shooting down the lumbering TBD Devastators in quick succession. Gay, whose gunner reported being wounded in the rear cockpit, managed to drop his torpedo before a Japanese fighter shot his airplane down, in the process wounding Gay in his left leg, arm, and hand. Ditching his TBD Devastator, which sank before any effort could be made to ascertain the condition of his gunner, Gay floated in the vicinity of the Japanese fleet, using a seat cushion to avoid detection by crewmen on board Japanese ships that passed nearby. He was the sole survivor of the 30 men in his squadron who launched from Hornet that day.

An Early Demise

Less than five months later, a major ground offensive by the Imperial Japanese Army was being supported by Japanese carriers and other large warships which were positioned near the southern Solomons in the hope of drawing out and decisively defeating Allied naval forces. As the Japanese ground offensive engaged U.S. forces in the battle for Guadalcanal’s Henderson Field, U.S. and Japanese ships and aircraft confronted each other on the morning of Oct. 26, just north of the Santa Cruz Islands.

After an exchange of attacks by carrier aircraft, U.S. warships were forced to retreat from the battle area. Ultimately, U.S. losses were one carrier sunk, USS Hornet, and another severely damaged, one destroyer sunk and two heavily damaged, and 81 aircraft. Despite their successes, the Japanese also had to retire because of high aircraft (99) losses and significant damage to both of their carriers, a heavy cruiser, and a light cruiser. Although the enemy could claim a tactical victory, it was never able to make up for the loss of veteran aircrew personnel—contributing to the Allies’ longer-term strategic advantage. This factor also prevented any further significant participation of Japanese carrier forces in the Guadalcanal campaign.


A Japanese Type 99 shipboard bomber (Allied codename Val) trails smoke as it dives toward USS Hornet (CV-8), during the morning of 26 October 1942. This plane struck the ship’s stack and then her flight deck. A Type 97 shipboard attack plane (Kate) is flying over Hornet after dropping its torpedo, and another Val is off her bow. Note anti-aircraft shell burst between Hornet and the camera, with its fragments striking the water nearby. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the U.S. National Archives.


USS HORNET (CV-8) dead in the water with USS NORTHAMPTON (CA-26) and a destroyer standing by, 26 October 1942.

The Office of Naval Intelligence produced a combat narrative of the Battle of Santa Cruz Islands in which Hornet was lost. It is available on the website of the Naval History and Heritage Command here.

The National Naval Aviation Museum is part of the Navy’s museum system, the largest of 10 official Navy museums located throughout the United States. Of the nation’s estimated 35,000 museums, 1,068 are currently accredited. AAM has been bringing museums together since 1906, helping to develop standards and best practices, gathering and sharing knowledge and providing advocacy on issues of concern to the entire museums community.

The Naval History and Heritage Command, located at the Washington Navy Yard, is responsible for the preservation, analysis, and dissemination of U.S. naval history and heritage. It provides the knowledge foundation for the Navy by maintaining historically relevant resources and products that reflect the Navy’s unique and enduring contributions through our nation’s history, and supports the fleet by assisting with and delivering professional research, analysis, and interpretive services. NHHC is composed of many activities including the Navy Department Library, the Navy Operational Archives, the Navy art and artifact collections, underwater archeology, Navy histories, nine museums, USS Constitution repair facility and the historic ship Nautilus.
Two Flights Defined Hornet’s Service
 

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F/A-18C of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 323 'Death Rattlers', MAG-11, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, carrying ten AIM-120 AMRAAMs and two AIM-9X missiles, refuelling over the W-291 training area in southern California, March 6.
 
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BMD

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The U.S. Navy Wants 32 More Nuclear Attack Submarines in the Next 15 Years

The U.S. Navy Wants 32 More Nuclear Attack Submarines in the Next 15 Years

Kris Osborn
,
The National InterestMarch 28, 2019
18915e544439ec33cb1250b8bf54da0f

Kris Osborn
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All in the plan to get to a 355 ship navy.
The U.S. Navy Wants 32 More Nuclear Attack Submarines in the Next 15 Years
Destroying enemy surface ships and submarines, “spying” close to enemy shores, bringing massive firepower to strategic areas and launching deadly undersea drones are all missions the Navy hopes to see more of in the future -- as the service plans to add as many as 32 attack submarines in just the next 15 years.
Overall, the addition of attack submarines represents the largest overall platform increase within the Navy’s ambitious plan to grow the fleet to 355 ships.
“Battle force inventory reaches 301 in 2020 and 355 in 2034,” Lt. Cmdr. Kevin Chambers, told Warrior Maven.
New Navy submarines are hosting an array of breakthrough technologies designed to carve a path into future maritime war; these include more firepower such as Tomahawk missiles and torpedoes, added electrical power for emerging systems such as drones and AI-enabled sensors, navigation and ship defenses.

As evidenced by the Navy’s most recent 30-Year Shipbuilding Plan, the Navy budget seeks to implement a new plan to build three Virginia-class attack submarines some years moving forward. This is, among other things, intended to address an anticipated future attack submarine deficit expected in the coming decade. For quite some time, Combatant Commanders have expressed serious concern that the availability of attack submarines continues to be dangerously lower than what is needed. Navy leadership has been working with Congress to rev-up production.
The previous status quo had been for the Navy to drop from building two Virginia-Class boats per year to one in the early 2020s when construction of the new Columbia-Class nuclear armed submarines begins. The service then moved to a plan to build two Virginia-class submarines and one Columbia-class submarine concurrently, according to findings from a previous Navy assessment.
The new Navy plan is to jump up to three Virginia-class per year when Columbia-class production hits a lull in “off years,” senior service leaders have told Congress.

There are many reasons why attack submarines are increasingly in demand; undersea vehicles are often able to conduct reconnaissance missions closer to targets than large-draft surface ships can. Forward positioning enables them to be “stealthier” in coastal areas, inlets or islands. As part of this, they can also move substantial firepower, in the form of Tomahawk missiles, closer to inland targets.
Not only is the Navy adding substantial firepower to its fleet of attack submarines, but the service is further emphasizing enhanced “spy” like intelligence, surveillance reconnaissance missions. By leveraging an ability to operate closer to enemy shorelines and threat areas than most surface ships, attack submarines can quietly patrol shallow waters near enemy coastline - scanning for enemy submarines, surface ships and coastal threats.

Improved undersea navigation and detection technology, using new sonar, increased computer automation and artificial intelligence, enable quieter, faster movements in littoral waters where enemy mines, small boats and other threatening assets often operate.
Virginia-Class submarines are engineered with a “Fly-by-Wire” capability which allows the ship to quietly linger in shallow waters without having to surface or have each small move controlled by a human operator.

With “Fly-by-Wire” technology, a human operator will order depth and speed, allowing software to direct the movement of the planes and rudder to maintain course and depth, Navy program managers have told Warrior Maven. The ships can be driven primarily through software code and electronics, thus freeing up time and energy for an operator who does not need to manually control each small maneuver.
“The most important feature for maneuvering in littoral waters is the fly-by-wire control system, whereby computers in the control center electronically adjust the submarine's control surfaces, a significant improvement from the hydraulic systems used in the Los Angeles-class,” a 2016 Stanford University “The Future of Nuclear Submarines” paper by Alexander Yachanin writes.

This technology, using upgradable software and fast-growing AI applications, widens the mission envelope for the attack submarines by vastly expanding their ISR potential. Using real-time analytics and an instant ability to draw upon an organize vast data-bases of information and sensor input, computer algorithms can now perform a range of procedural functions historically performed by humans. This can increase speed of maneuverability and an attack submarine's ability to quickly shift course, change speed or alter depth positioning when faced with attacks.
A closer-in or littoral undersea advantage, Navy strategy documents explain, can increase “ashore attack” mission potential along with ISR-empowered anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare operations.

The US Navy’s published “Commander’s Intent for the United States Submarine Force,” published last year, writes - “We are uniquely capable of, and often best employed in, stealthy, clandestine and independent operations……. we exploit the advantages of undersea concealment which allow us to: , Conduct undetected operations such as strategic deterrent patrols, intelligence collection, Special Operations Forces support, non-provocative transits, and repositioning.”

The Navy is implementing elements of this strategy with its recently launched USS South Dakota, a Block III Virginia-Class attack submarine engineered with a host of new, unprecedented undersea technologies, Navy officials said.

Many of these innovations, which have been underway and tested as prototypes for many years, are now operational as the USS South Dakota enters service; service technology developers have, in a general way, said the advances in undersea technologies built, integrated, tested and now operational on the South Dakota include quieting technologies for the engine room to make the submarine harder to detect, a new large vertical array and additional "quieting" coating materials for the hull, Navy officials have told Warrior Maven.

The Block III Virginia-Class submarines also have what’s called a Large Aperture Bow conformal array sonar system – designed to listen for an acoustic ping, analyze the return signal, and provide the location and possible contours of enemy ships, submarines and other threats.

For Block V construction, the Navy is planning to insert a new 84-foot long section designed to house additional missile capability. “Virginia Payload Modules.” The Virginia Payload Modules, to come in future years, will increase the Tomahawk missile firepower of the submarines from 12 missiles up to 40.

The VPM submarines will have an additional (approximately 84 feet) section with four additional Virginia Payload Tubes, each capable of carrying seven Tomahawk cruise missiles, for a ship total of 40 Tomahawks.
Osborn previously served at the Pentagon as a Highly Qualified Expert with the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army - Acquisition, Logistics & Technology. Osborn has also worked as an anchor and on-air military specialist at national TV networks. He has a Masters in Comparative Literature from Columbia University.
 
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USCG LEDET interdicts a narco sub. The seizure netted eight tons of cocaine.


Jumping onto a wet, slippery, moving semi-submersible with a crew that's possibly armed, and doing so from another wet, slippery, moving and definitely armed boat is freaking crazy.
 
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BMD

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The Defense Department has awarded Lockheed Martin a $405 million contract to re-purpose a Navy Conventional Prompt Strike (CPS) designed for submarine launch for use by the Army to give ground forces the means to fire a hypersonic glide body, marking a major development by the Pentagon to ready a new class of ultra-fast conventional weapons to strike high-priority targets in the open salvos of a major fight.

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DOD awards Lockheed $405M contract to re-purpose Navy hypersonic booster for Army use
The Defense Department has awarded Lockheed Martin a $405 million contract to re-purpose a Navy rocket designed for submarine launch for use by the Army to give ground forces the means to fire a hypersonic glide body, marking a major development by the Pentagon to ready a new class of ultra-fast...

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BMD

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New Surface Squadron Receiving Unmanned Sea Hunter Ahead of Tests with Zumwalt Destroyers - USNI News

New Surface Squadron Receiving Unmanned Sea Hunter Ahead of Tests with Zumwalt Destroyers
By: Gidget Fuentes

September 2, 2019 10:39 AM

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USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) and the Sea Hunter autonomous surface craft.

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – The Navy’s new surface development squadron will soon receive its first unmanned vehicle to begin experimenting with, as the service looks to incorporate new types of manned and unmanned platforms into how it fights at sea.

The San Diego-based Surface Development Squadron 1 is in the process of taking administrative and operational controls of the unmanned ship Sea Hunter by Oct. 1, Capt. Henry Adams, commodore of SURFDEVRON 1, told a Surface Navy Association West Symposium audience.

“We are five and a half weeks out of pulling the switch and the Navy formally assuming custody,” Adams said, during a panel at the SNA West symposium, held pierside at Naval Base San Diego on Aug. 22.

Sea Hunter was developed by the Office of Naval Research and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and will be transferred to the fleet for experimentation.

“There’s already a lot of interest in renting Sea Hunter by a variety of organizations to go support their underway operations, to include training,” Adams said. “The value there is beginning to expose the fleet to … an unmanned system, so our sailors get comfortable and competent and confident operating around unmanned systems, because they’re coming.”

Adams took command of SURDEVRON — formerly the DDG-1000 only Zumwalt Squadron — on May 22 with the missions of integrating new manned and unmanned surface ships and supporting fleet experiments.

SURFDEVRON is responsible for the maintenance, training and manning oversight for medium and large unmanned surface vessels (USVs) – currently limited to Sea Hunter – as well as the three-ship Zumwalt class that will include USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000), USS Michael Monsoor (DDG-1001) and the future Lyndon B. Johnson (DDG-1002). The first four Littoral Combat Ships, which currently serve to test mission package equipment before fielding, will likely join the SURFDEVRON down the road.

The next two years will be busy.

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Sea Hunter. US Navy Photo

“We’re going to get Sea Hunter 2 late next year. We’re going to get the two Strategic Capabilities Office Ghost Fleet Large USVs in late 2021, early ’22,” Adams said. “So by early 2022, we’ll have two MUSVs, two LUSVs … that will be able to support unit-level training, advanced training and integrated training.”

Adams outlined three main lines of effort that are his focus at SURFDEVRON.

As the commodore of SURFDEVRON, he’s the consolidated immediate-supervisor-in-charge, or ISIC, for the DDG-1000 class. “My intention is focused on supporting them through the delivery process … and realize the full potential of the class,” he said, including a future role in sea control operations and experimentation. “There’s great promise there, but there’s going to be a lot of work to do,” he added.

The squadron also is supporting ship delivery. Zumwalt “is in the midst of combat systems activation, which will run until the spring,” when the ship undergoes a maintenance availability before working toward initial operating capability (IOC) and fleet training, he said. “The Michael Monsoor is not far behind.”

With the administrative control of the Zumwalt, Michael Monsoor and pre-commissioning crew of the Lyndon B Johnson, he added, “that alignment is complete, and we’re off to the races.”

SURFDEVRON also will be, “the Echelon IV belly button for fleet transition, integration and operations of medium and large USVs,” Adams said, describing the program of record as, “a freight train,” with crew concepts, command and control, and operational concepts still to be developed. “A lot of work has to be done, and we’re going to be the ISIC that does that.”


The lead ship of the U.S. Navy’s newest class of guided-missile destroyers, USS Zumwalt (DDG 1000), arrives in Pearl Harbor April 2, 2019. US Navy photo.

And SURFDEVRON is focused on developmental operations, a role that reaches across the Navy and the defense ecosystem. Adams said DEVOPS takes ships through demonstrations and experiments at sea to contribute to technology development. This work with technologies – which he said are out of the lab but not quite ready for fielding – provides lessons in an operationally relevant environment than can inform requirements and acquisitions teams.

Adams, who previously commanded Destroyer Squadron 21, currently has about 25 sailors, most from the former Zumwalt Squadron staff. “Our mission set is different from where it used to be, so we are retooling culture, we’re retooling staff, we’re growing staff,” he said.

Once the SURFDEVRON has more ships and vessels to work with, it will be able to use them to support the Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center and others to support advanced and integrated fleet training for deploying forces. Adams said he anticipates the Zumwalt-class ships and USVs will join in those training events as participants or as opposing forces.

Much remains to be seen as the Navy realizes the potential of these new systems and technologies. “We’ve got to go faster. We’ve got to figure out ways to develop capabilities, both technical … and conceptual, to continue to outpace our enemy – or in some cases, catch up or surpass them,” Adams told the SNA audience.

With custody of Sea Hunter, he added, “I see lot work to be done with the Zumwalt-class, technology that’s coming. It’s a little bit of the Wild West. It’s exciting.”
 
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York (JC) is buying Carrier, Mcquay already bought by Daikin.

Given Trane controls more than 52% of the global a/c Chiller market, consolidation was inevitable.
Yup. Seems so. Trane itself being controlled by Ingersoll Rand. Hitachi in India has ceded majority control to JC for its Chillers & VRF segments. Not clear if it's an international deal. If I'm not mistaken the JV extends to Light & Commercial Applications here as well. Meanwhile Career India has tied up with Midea China in a 50:50 JV for unitary products. This is 5-6 years old news. I'm told the same was to be rolled out internationally eventually.
 

Milspec

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Yup. Seems so. Trane itself being controlled by Ingersoll Rand. Hitachi in India has ceded majority control to JC for its Chillers & VRF segments. Not clear if it's an international deal. If I'm not mistaken the JV extends to Light & Commercial Applications here as well. Meanwhile Career India has tied up with Midea China in a 50:50 JV for unitary products. This is 5-6 years old news. I'm told the same was to be rolled out internationally eventually.
Funny you mentioned that, IR will be split into two: Ingersollrand- Gardner denver Tools type co and Trane-Thermoking will spin off into a Climate Co.
So Ingersoll Rand and GD will merge together and will become a tools, material handling type company and will also buy Precision flow System, they will also retain Club car.
Trane (Residential and Commercial) along with TK will become one entity and will continue it's shopping spree of a bunch of smaller players Calmac, ICS, ecofacotor, etc.

https://www.bizjournals.com/milwauk...enver-to-become-ingersoll-rand-in-merger.html
 
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BMD

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US Navy deploys new ship-killer missile to China’s backyard

US Navy deploys new ship-killer missile to China’s backyard
By: David B. Larter   2 days ago

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The Independence-variant littoral combat ship Gabrielle Giffords rests pierside at Naval Base San Diego, Calif. (MC3 Abby Rader/U.S. Navy)
WASHINGTON — It can travel more than 100 nautical miles, passively detect an enemy through imaging stored in its computer brain and can kill a target so precisely that an operator can tell it to aim for a specific point on a ship — the engine room or the bridge, for example. And it’s heading to China’s stomping grounds.

The U.S. Navy littoral combat ship Gabrielle Giffords deployed Tuesday from San Diego, California, packing the service’s new Naval Strike Missile, transforming the LCS from an under-gunned concept ship gone awry to a legitimate threat to Chinese warships at significant ranges.

Giffords is the second LCS to deploy this year. The LCS Montgomery also deployed from San Diego in June after a 19-month lapse in LCS deployments as the Navy reworked the way it mans and trains crews for the ships.

Pacific Fleet spokesman Capt. John Gay confirmed Giffords’ deployment, saying the ship got underway Sept. 3, equipped with the Naval Strike Missile and the newly mission-capable MQ-8C Fire Scout drone. The Fire Scout, an over-the-horizon surveillance and targeting platform, achieved its initial operational capability in June.



The US Navy’s new ship-killer missile slated to make its fleet debut much sooner than expected
With the first major deployments of littoral combat ships in years planned for 2019, the surface Navy is in a full-court press to accelerate its integrate the new missile on the platform.

By: David Larter

A Navy official speaking on condition of anonymity said the ship was deploying to the Indo-Pacific theater. The official did not elaborate on the ship’s schedule. Giffords’ sister ship, the Montgomery, is currently operating in the Gulf of Thailand, according to a Navy website.

When equipped with the Raytheon/Kongsberg-made Naval Strike Missile, or NSM, and Northrop Grumman’s Fire Scout for surveillance over the horizon, an LCS sitting off the coast of Virginia Beach, Virginia, could destroy a ship sitting off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. That’s more than 30 miles further than the published range of the current anti-ship missile, the Harpoon, which is in excess of 67 miles.

The Navy has signaled it will also install NSM on its next small surface combatant, FFG(X).

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The deployment is the latest sign that the U.S. Navy is gradually upping its game in the Pacific, which during the past decade has seen rising tension over expansive Chinese maritime claims decried by the international community but enforced by China’s Navy, Coast Guard and maritime militias.

The U.S. Navy has made a dedicated push to improve the ranges of its systems, from its missiles and sensors, to its air wing with the development of the MQ-25 Stingray unmanned aerial refueling drone and new conformal fuel tanks for the F/A-18 Super Hornets that increase the speed and range of the service’s mainstay aircraft.

But it’s also a sign that despite a steady drumbeat inside the Pentagon to “move faster” to get new capabilities to the fleet, the Navy’s process is still moving painfully slow. The NSM partially answers the bell for a joint urgent operational need issued by former U.S. Pacific Command head Adm. Robert Willard from early in President Barack Obama’s first term, who identified the need for longer-range anti-ship missiles in the Pacific.

“It’s great that the Navy is doing these improvements, but it’s very incremental,” said Bryan Clark, a retired submarine officer and analyst with the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments. "It has been a decade since the Navy said: ‘Hey, we need to start an unmanned aircraft program of some kind, and we need put better anti-ship missiles on our ships.’ ”

“And here we are, 10 years later, and the MQ-25 is still making its way toward fielding, which won’t happen for several years, and we’re finally deploying a ship with a better anti-ship cruise missile," Clark added. "So kudos to the Navy for doing it, but this is emblematic of the problem the [Department of Defense] has in making the shift toward new ways of fighting. It just can’t get out of its own way to field a new capability in under a decade.”



Newly reorganized littoral combat ship program faces its first big test in 2019
The program is looking to shake off years of criticism and start performing missions that have been underserved.

By: David Larter

LCS to the Pacific

The surface Navy has signaled its intention to maintain a steady forward presence of littoral combat ships in the region for the foreseeable future. Giffords is the second LCS to deploy under the newly reorganized LCS program.

In an August 2018 interview, Navy Surface Warfare boss Adm. Richard Brown told Defense News that once the deployments started, they weren't going to stop.

“We are on track with the 2016 [chief of naval operations] review of the LCS … and I think we will see the first deployments next year and then happening continuously after that,” said Brown, who heads Naval Surface Force Pacific.

The trimarans Montgomery and Giffords would deploy first from the Pacific, then the mono-hulled Detroit and Little Rock on the East Coast, Brown said.

Getting a more deadly LCS up and running is critical for the surface Navy, which has been rocked by a string of engineering mishaps with the new littoral combat ships — some caused by crew errors — and by the 2017 accidents that claimed the lives of 17 sailors in the Pacific in two separate collisions. The Navy is on track to take delivery of 35 littoral combat ships total, a major chunk of the surface fleet.

The Navy has sought to keep up a consistent presence in the South China Sea, something that will be made easier once more littoral combat ships are regularly deploying. In its 2016 reorganization, the Navy switched from an arcane three-crew-for-two-hulls system to a more traditional blue-and-gold crewing model, where two crews man one hull and switch off at various periods in the ship’s deployment cycle.

That maintains a high operational tempo for the ship without burning out any one crew member, meaning more time forward for the Navy’s only small surface combatant.

Under the Trump administration, the Navy has stepped up its freedom-of-navigation patrols of Chinese claims in the South China Sea, a type of patrol where a Navy ships sail within 12 nautical miles of a Chinese-claimed features to demonstrate that the U.S. has the right to pass peacefully and freely without any preconditions in waters China claims as its territory.

Some have argued that using the Japan-based cruisers and destroyers for such missions is a waste of high-end assets and could instead be accomplished more cheaply and just as effectively with an LCS, freeing up destroyers and cruisers for missions involving their advanced sensors and weaponry.

The Navy just took delivery of the 17th LCS, the Indianapolis, in June. The mono-hull LCS is made by Lockheed Martin with Fincantieri in Marinette, Wisconsin, and all of those variants will be stationed in Mayport, Florida, where LCS Squadron 2 is based. The trimaran version is made by Austal USA, and all of those variants will be stationed on the West Coast.
 
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