Author Topic: USN To Buy Real Frigates Now  (Read 10093 times)

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Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: USN To Buy Real Frigates Now
« Reply #25 on: January 30, 2019, 14:10:01 »
Start of a major piece with lots of technical detail, graphics on plans for new USN frigates (only Fincantieri-based design also in for CSCs--and compare likely unit costs)--further links at original:

Quote
The Navy's Future Frigates Are Shaping Up To Be More Lethal And Capable, As Well As Cheaper
The requirements have expanded, but the service is pushing for commonality with existing systems to push the price point down.

The U.S. Navy expects to complete a design review of five proposed frigate designs by the end of this spring. This will help the service finalize its requirements and pave the way for a full, open competition to hire one company to build 20 frigates, each of which will cost more than $800 million. These ships will be a significant component of a growing surface warfare renaissance within the service.

Navy officials offered the latest details on the state of the program at the Surface Navy Association’s (SNA) main annual conference on Jan. 15, 2019. The service first announced its was in the market to procure new guided missile frigates, presently referred to as FFG(X), in 2017. Subsequently, General Dynamics Bath Iron Works, Fincantieri Marine, Huntington Ingalls, Austal USA, and Lockheed Martin each received $15 million contracts in 2018 to craft proposed designs and to help the Navy figure out exactly what it wanted out of the ships.

Firmer requirements

“Our requirements are mature,” Dr. Regan Campbell, the FFG(X) program manager at Naval Sea Systems Command, said during remarks at the SNA conference on Jan. 17, 2019. “We’ve engaged with industry, gotten a lot of wonderful feedback and significant savings from that engagement. And we are on track to finish those conceptual design contracts, and through that process I think we are going to have a robust competition going into detailed design and construction.”

Campbell said that the Navy received more than 300 specific suggestions from the five contractors regarding the requirements for the frigates, as well as ways to save money. The service implemented around 200 of those pointers.

There were no details on exactly what these changes to the Navy’s requirements included, but the service is now increasingly confident that the average unit cost for the ships will be closer to $800 million each. The initial threshold unit price was $950 million apiece...


http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/26217/the-navys-future-frigates-are-shaping-up-to-be-more-lethal-and-capable-as-well-as-cheaper

Mark
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Offline Oldgateboatdriver

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Re: USN To Buy Real Frigates Now
« Reply #26 on: January 30, 2019, 15:00:10 »
Knowing the Americans, I'd put down a fiver on the Huntington Ingalls Patrol frigate.

This said, I find it interesting that they basically state that, using maximum systems already developed and in service with the US Navy and for a 20 ship build over a few short years in the near future, they are looking at more than US$ 800M as unit cost.

That would translate to more than 1.1B$ CAN each. So the forecasted cost of $30B CAN for 15 Canadian warships to be built over 15 years or so and delivering a more complex and powerful "frigate" (the type 26) - in other words at about 2B$ CAN each on average - is not looking too badly in comparison. Remember before chiming in here that we are talking about the cost to build only in both cases and the overall Canadian figure of 60B$ CAN is for all project costs, including parts, maintenance, and operation over the life of the ships.

Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: USN To Buy Real Frigates Now
« Reply #27 on: January 30, 2019, 15:32:51 »
Oldgateboatdriver:

Quote
overall Canadian figure of 60B$ CAN is for all project costs, including parts, maintenance, and operation over the life of the ships

I don't think so--this what the government says:

Quote
...
SSE estimates these ships will cost $56-60 billion. Further costs for personnel, operations, and maintenance for the life cycle of the CSC ships are greatly influenced by the ship design and will therefore only be available later in the process...
http://www.forces.gc.ca/en/business-equipment/canadian-surface-combatant.page

Note that "Further costs".

Mark
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Offline Oldgateboatdriver

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Re: USN To Buy Real Frigates Now
« Reply #28 on: January 30, 2019, 16:17:12 »
Mark:

I am using the figures from the PBO report, which I trust a lot more than figures of "SSE", which as you know stands for "Strong Secure Engaged". Basically political figures put in a political document for political consumption, that just happen to match the overall program cost estimated by the PBO. A nice way of being able to say: See, we knew the PBO was right - we even came under our estimate - if the PBO was correct, while having some slack (15B$ worth of slack actually) if things go pear shape on them and the actual construction price skyrockets.

Here is the reference to the PBO report.

https://www.pbo-dpb.gc.ca/web/default/files/Documents/Reports/2017/CSC%20Costing/CSC_EN.pdf

You will note that his figures for the actual ships building cost averages at 1.66 B$ CAN in FY 2017 dollars and 2.73 B$ in "then-year" dollars, which means the actual cost of the ship as paid in the year it will be paid (i.e. likely lower than average for the first five or six ship and higher for the last five or six, with the last one costing the most due to inflation). The relevant figure here is the "total production cost" figure only.

As you know, it is the cost in constant FY terms that is used to truly compare - and therefore the one in FY 2017. The PBO's report figured on contract let out in 2018 (hasn't occurred yet) and construction starting in 2021 ( won't happen government now says "early" 2020's, which everybody seems to think means 2024, mmmmaaaayyybeeee 2023. So I've adjusted the figure for FY 2019 dollars and that is how I get the 30B$ CAN figure and about 2B$ CAN unit price.

Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: USN To Buy Real Frigates Now
« Reply #29 on: January 30, 2019, 17:14:34 »
All I can say is that we are paying well over market rate to a monopoly builder, with very limited experience in situ, that the gov't cannot let fail (and from much that is said here is a crummy company)--and if, gosh, 15 CSCs can't be afforded what will we pay per ship for a lower number?

No way to run a...but that's Canadian defence procurement (both parties), folks.

Mark
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Offline Colin P

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Re: USN To Buy Real Frigates Now
« Reply #30 on: January 30, 2019, 21:02:40 »
Sadly from a political perspective, I can`t see a government not including Irving in any ship building program, the political cost is to high and not enough balls to say no to them. As far as I am concerned, both Davie and Seaspan pulled up their socks without major federal contracts to support them, I have to think that divesting irving of the shipbuilding and overhauling the management team with better supervision and demands on the workers would be a good thing for the east coast shipyards.

Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: USN To Buy Real Frigates Now
« Reply #31 on: January 30, 2019, 21:12:38 »
Ah the Irvings, purchasers (one way or another) of political parties, or, third-world politics.

Mark
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Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: USN To Buy Real Frigates Now
« Reply #32 on: March 02, 2019, 13:13:01 »
Latest on USN's new FFG(X) frigates:

Quote
Navy Issues Draft RFP for FFG(X) Next-Generation Frigate

The Navy has issued a draft request for proposal to design and build its planned class of 20 next-generation guided-missile frigates (FFG(X)).

Posted late Friday [March 1], the detailed design and construction RFP draft will serve as a practice run for shipbuilders to pitch their designs for the small surface combatants that are set to follow on the two classes of Littoral Combat Ships currently in production.

The document lays out a schedule to produce 10 ships — a lead ship that would deliver 72 months after contract award and options for nine follow-ons hulls. Later this year, the Navy plans to issue a final detailed design and construction RFP with the contract to be awarded in 2020. Submissions for the work have to be based on an existing U.S. or allied hull currently in service as part of an ongoing rapid acquisition scheme for the class.

Friday’s draft follows the Navy’s award last year of five development contracts to shipbuilders to refine an existing parent hull design to serve as a basis for the frigate.

Huntington Ingalls Industries, Austal USA, Lockheed Martin, Fincantieri Marine and General Dynamics Bath Iron Works were awarded $15 million teach last year to refine their own frigate parent designs.

While the five shipbuilders have worked with the Navy to refine the designs, the competition for the upcoming detailed design and construction contract will be open to any competitor that meets the requirements for a pitch based on a mature parent design, the Navy said earlier this year.

As to price, earlier this year the service gave an updated range for what the follow-on ships could cost based on work down through the development contracts.

That $950 (million) was the threshold; $800 million is the objective [per ship, emphasis added]” frigate program manager with Program Executive Office Unmanned and Small Combatants Regan Campbell said in January at the Surface Navy Association symposium.

“We started closer to the $950; we are trending to very close to the $800 now. We have taken some very significant costs out of the average follow units. Lead ship? I won’t give you a number, but it is reflected in the president’s budget, which you will see shortly.”

The Navy is holding an unclassified industry day on March 19 and contract submissions for the draft are due by April 1.

In the summary of the draft RFP, the Navy sets out a vision for the new class that cast the FFG(X)s in a role as a major sensor node in an emerging integrated Navy tactical battle network.

“As part of the Navy’s Distributed Maritime Operations Concept, the FFG(X) small surface combatant will expand blue force sensor and weapon influence to enhance the overall fleet tactical picture while challenging adversary intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, and tracking efforts,” read the summary of the effort posted on FedBizOpps.

“FFG(X) will also contribute to the Navy the nation needs by relieving large surface combatants from the stress of routine duties during operations other than war.”

In January, the service laid out in more detail the baseline capabilities for the planned class that include:

    A fixed-face Raytheon Enterprise Air Surveillance Radar (EASR) that will serve as the primary air search radar.
    At least 32 Mark 41 Vertical Launch System cells that could field Standard Missile 2 Block IIICs or RIM-162 Evolved SeaSparrow Missiles (ESSM) and a planned vertically launched anti-submarine warfare weapon.
    COMBATSS-21 Combat Management System based on the Aegis Combat System
[emphasis added].
    Cooperative Engagement Capability (CEC) datalink that would allow the frigate to share targeting information with other ships and aircraft.
    Space, weight and cooling for 8 to 16 Over-the-Horizon Anti-Ship Cruise Missiles
    An aviation detachment that includes an MH-60R Seahawk helicopter and an MQ-8C Firescout Unmanned Aerial Vehicle.
    AN/SQQ-89(V)15 Surface Ship Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Combat System
    AN/SQS-62 Variable Depth Sonar.
    SLQ-32(V)6 Surface Electronic Warfare Improvement Program (SEWIP) Block 2 electronic warfare suite with allowances to include SEWIP Block 3 Lite in the future.
    Space, weight and cooling reservation for a 150-kilowatt laser.

While the Navy hasn’t been explicit about the connection, the inclusion of the high-bandwidth datalinks on FFG(X) hint at an important role for the class to provide command and control and targeting information to the Navy’s emerging family of unmanned surface vehicles.




Proposed Government Furnished Equipment for FFG(X) [included in unit cost of ships?

https://news.usni.org/2019/03/02/navy-issues-draft-rfp-ffgx-next-generation-frigate

Mark
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Offline Spencer100

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Re: USN To Buy Real Frigates Now
« Reply #33 on: May 29, 2019, 12:45:25 »

Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: USN To Buy Real Frigates Now
« Reply #34 on: May 29, 2019, 15:32:31 »
Excerpts from this piece:

Quote
FFG(X): One Down, Three More to Go

There are two new ship programs running in parallel attempting to do some kind of damage control from the disastrous Age of Transformation that begat LCS & DDG-1000, and the trainwreck of the aborted CG(X) program – and so we wait for FFG(X) and the unfortunately named Large Surface Combatant (LSC).

FFG(X) will fill the gap created by the now generally recognized sub-optimal LCS, LSC will give us an opportunity not to build DDG-51 Class ships until the crack of doom, as well as try to patch up the gap of the DDG-1000 balk and CG(X) … whatever that was.

Earlier this month, we were blessed with an update on the FFG(X) program everyone should reference when they get a chance, in there is a nice summary of the five contenders [ https://fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/R44972.pdf ]...

Those long time critics of both LCS classes, this brings mixed feelings. First, it brings joy as it removes from consideration one of two sub-optimal designs that, if either was chosen for FFG(X) would simply burden our Navy with a doubled-down bad bet. However, secondly it brings a bit of bitter sadness as it has been clear for a long time that the FFG(X) program was scoped in a way that intentionally kept both LCS hulls in play. The farcical 57mm gun on a FREMM designed for a 127mm gun being the most obvious manifestation of these force-moded compromises...

Effectiveness and combat ability has never been the only driver and that is part of the challenge. In the background there has always been the considerations of our industrial base [emphasis added-. This is threaded through all discussions of FFG(X)...
https://blog.usni.org/posts/2019/05/29/ffgx-one-down-three-more-to-go

Mark
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Ça explique, mais ça n'excuse pas.