– Breaking Defense – It’s a major shift after decades in which submarines focused on projecting power ashore, with their only anti-ship weapons being their rarely-used torpedoes. Driving the change: increasing anxiety about China.
– USNI Blog – Revisiting the opening campaigns in the Pacific from December of 1941 through the spring of 1942 may help divine a blueprint for future wartime aircraft carrier (CV) operations. During the early days of the war, America’s CVs operated at the edge of their logistical tether, conducting long-range tactical raids to preserve a mobile striking force and effect strategic results.
– Defense News – The U.S. Navy’s top officer released an updated version of his strategy document Monday, an expanded version heavy on goals for specific programs that extend beyond his tenure as chief of Naval Operations.
– USNI News – Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson lays out aggressive acquisition goals and overhauls in how the Navy develops new technologies and implements operating concepts in a sweeping 2.0 revision of his Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority. The push to field new kit and concepts is his effort to ready the Navy for not only high-end warfare but also gray-zone conflict and other challenges related to Russian and Chinese aggression that the service and joint force will have to confront.
– CIMSEC – How well a military has prepared for conflict in peace helps determine how much it will have to adjust in war. In this sense, force development is the peacetime equivalent of wartime adaptation.
– USNI Blog – As of this writing, the Navy consists of 287 deployable battle-force ships, of which some 31 are part of the amphibious force. These ships—“amphibs” in Navy parlance—are optimized for the transport and delivery of land power from the sea (otherwise known as the U.S. Marine Corps). Amphibs are large and capable and are among the most heavily tasked ships in the Navy because of their versatility and value to regional combatant commanders. What they aren’t is lethal, at least as warships go, and this limitation is no longer acceptable as the Navy limbers up for great power competition. In addition, given the reemergence of budget uncertainty and the near-certainty that the Navy will not achieve the 355-ship level described in its 2016 Force Structure Assessment, it must make more lethally efficient use of the floating real estate it operates, including platforms such as amphibs which traditionally have fielded only self-defense weapons.
– Breaking Defense – The Navy may begin deploying submarine-hunting P-8 Poseidon aircraft to a small airstrip hundreds of miles off the Alaskan coast, signaling a new emphasis on keeping watch over Russian and Chinese moves in the Arctic. The remote runway sits on the island of Adak in the Aleutian island chain, and is the westernmost airfield that can handle passenger aircraft in the United States — in fact, it currently handles Air Alaska flights two days a week. Formally known as Naval Air Facility Adak, the small airport has been operating commercially since the Navy moved out in 1997, but increasing Russian and Chinese activity in the Arctic has the Navy looking at new patrols as it searches for ways to keep a closer watch on the far north.
– Breaking Defense – Navy readiness is “heading in the wrong direction,” the Government Accountability Office told the Senate this morning, with only 15 percent of Navy F-35Cs rated “fully mission capable.” At the same hearing, a four-star admiral acknowledged three nuclear-powered attack submarines were still stuck awaiting overhaul, with the USS Boise expected to be out of action for a total of six years.
– USNI News – The Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group has sailed out of U.S. 6th Fleet and is on its way back to its homeport in Norfolk, Va. The strike group is wrapping up the second of two back-to-back three-month deployments as part of the Navy’s first attempt to demonstrate the Pentagon’s dynamic force employment concept.
– CIMSEC – This week CIMSEC featured 6 fictional short stories which explore various national security themes through fiction. Check them out as there is no better way to think about the future than through fiction…
– USNI Proceedings – As USNI News reported last month, U.S. aircraft carrier deployments this year have been at a 25-year low, and there were 22 days in 2018 when no carriers were deployed at all. Some pundits might speculate what the Navy is up to, but overall there is good news and some key takeaways.
– USNI News – After less than a year in Japan, the amphibious warship USS Wasp (LHD-1) is preparing its sailors to return to the East Coast next year. Wasp, one of two amphibious warships certified to operate Marine F-35B Lighting II Joint Strike Fighters, is set to return to Naval Station Norfolk, Va., in late 2019 as part of a previously set plan to balance the F-35B capability across both coasts
– USNI News – A U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer conducted a freedom of navigation operation on Wednesday near the home of Russia’s Pacific fleet.
– Defense News – The U.S. Navy took delivery of the last piece of the littoral combat ship’s anti-submarine warfare mission module Nov. 30, according to a release from Naval Sea Systems Command, pushing the service closer to declaring the well-delayed capability operational despite continued headwinds.
– CIMSEC – The future of U.S. seapower in the Indo-Pacific is filled with challenges yet ripe with opportunity.
– CIMSEC – CIMSEC had the opportunity to ask leaders at the Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center (SMWDC) and the USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) Carrier Strike Group about the first East Coast Carrier Strike Group (CSG) Cruiser-Destroyer (CRUDES) Surface Warfare Advanced Tactical Training (SWATT) exercise.
– War Zone – In the next few years, the Navy hopes to develop four new mines to help deny enemy navies freedom of movement during major conflicts.
– USNI News – Navy officials like the potential costs savings of using one hull design for the service’s family of support ships and are talking with industry leaders early and often to make this plan feasible.
– Breaking Defense – The Arctic will become increasingly crowded in the coming years, and the US navy;’s Second Fleet is making it a priority to get up there more often.
– War Zone – The Growlers are sorely in need of the new jamming systems, but the present pod design could create all-new issues.
– Breaking Defense – The once-revolutionary prospects of the Navy’s Zumwalt-class destroyer continue to be whittled away. Having lost some of its touted stealth capabilities and suffered a series of engine and electrical problems, now it’s likely to ditch its long-troubled gun.
– Navy Times – The technology glitches plaguing the aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford, lead ship of the Navy’s next generation of flattops, are getting fixed, officials told lawmakers during a Tuesday hearing on Capitol Hill.
– USNI News – The Navy’s next in-depth look at force structure, due sometime in 2019, is unlikely to alter plans for building a 355-ship fleet, according to the service’s top leaders.
– C4ISRNet – A new module will outfit the Navy’s Virginia-class submarines with a series of useful tubes waiting to be filled with possibility. New missiles and possibly torpedoes will likely form the bulk of new payloads for the Virginia Payload Module (VPM), but one of the possibilities is as an exit point for vertically berthed underwater uncrewed vehicles, a home and launching point for robots waiting to scout the surrounding sea.
– Defense News – In the wake of two tragic collisions that claimed the lives of 17 sailors in 2017, a troubling question arose: What if the U.S. Navy has forgotten how to drive its ships? After the accidents, reviews found shortfalls in training, manning and deployment schedules for forward-deployed Navy ships.