Archive for the ‘Reports’ Category

Naval Takeaways from 2018 Defense Budget

November 9, 2017

The combined House and Senate Armed Services Committees have vetted the administration’s defense budget request. Naval highlights include:

“Authorizes multiyear contract authority and advance procurement for up to 13 Virginia-class submarines.

 Authorizes multiyear contract authority and advance procurement for up to 15 Arleigh Burke-class destroyers.

Authorizes the Secretary of Homeland Security to procure the first polar-class heavy icebreaker and includes a review of Navy capabilities in the Arctic region.

Codifies at least a 355-ship Navy with the optimal mix of ships as U.S. policy.

Authorizes limited aspects of the Department’s proposal to recapitalize the Ready Reserve Force.

Expands the National Sea-Based Deterrence Fund to include multiyear procurement of critical components.

Directs reports of maritime intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, and targeting; defense of combat logistics and strategic mobility forces; the acquisition strategy to recapitalize undersea fixed surveillance systems; Los Angeles-class submarine service life extensions; and mine warfare readiness.” (Committees highlights report, 5) 

Page 4 presents a breakdown of what authorizations are included for shipbuilding, among them “… $30 million for preliminary design of a smaller aircraft carrier….”

Defense News has an analysis of this approval.

 

 

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Rising Sea Levels and the Navy

September 21, 2017

Although it may seem a little paradoxical to consider the impact of rising seas on the Navy, it needs to be emphasized that so much of what supplies the Navy (and the Marines) is land-based. Even Naval Air Stations are not resistant to rising sea levels. The Navy’s recognition and response to this threat is found within this document that contains a summary of a conference held by the National Academy of Engineering – Responding to the Threat of Sea Level Rise.

How Does the House of Lords Work?

September 20, 2017

Customs and Traditions of the House of Lords sheds some light on how this body operates. In a short but informative way, this entity is examined from its inception. Numerous footnotes and appendices help to explain what this institution actually does. For those of us not really familiar with the workings of the House of Lords, this primer really does help. So when we encounter Lord Bombast or Viscount Haughty in our readings, we can place them in context.

What Are the Causes for the Recent U.S. Navy Collisions?

August 30, 2017

Maybe this article from the Navy Times has the answer – Maybe today’s Navy is just not good at driving ships. This is further supported by a series of three articles published in Proceedings Today: Collisions: Part I – What Are the Root Causes?; Collisions: Part II – Operational Pause; and Collisions: Part III – Maintenance.

Required reading is the oft-cited 2010 Report of the Fleet Review Panel on Surface Force Readiness as chaired by retired Vice Admiral Philip Balisle.

Another important document is this 2010 GAO report – Navy Needs to Reassess Its Metrics and Assumptions for Ship Crewing Requirements and Training as is this 2017 report – Navy Readiness: Actions Needed to Maintain Viable Surge Sealift and Combat Logistics Fleets. Other GAO investigations on the Navy can be found here.

Numerous Congressional hearings on fleet readiness are also available online.

One should peruse this 2017 CRS report – Defining Readiness: Background and Issues for Congress.

CRS Reports of Naval Interest

May 31, 2017

The Congressional Research Service (CRS) is essentially a think tank located within the Library of Congress that generates reports for Congresspeople and their staff. (More info here.) Since the interests of Congress are wide-ranging, CRS produces a veritable blizzard of reports on a plethora of subjects. One area of interest for Congress is naval affairs. Here is a listing of recent “products”: Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS)/Frigate Program: Background and Issues for Congress; Navy Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) Program: Background and Issues for Congress; Navy Lasers, Railgun, and Hypervelocity Projectile: Background and Issues for Congress; Navy Force Structure and Shipbuilding Plans: Background and Issues for Congress; Navy Ford (CVN-78) Class Aircraft Carrier Program: Background and Issues for Congress; Navy Virginia (SSN-774) Class Attack Submarine Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress; and Navy DDG-51 and DDG-1000 Destroyer Programs: Background and Issues for Congress.

The Parker Report on the Royal Navy

November 29, 2016

Why are Royal Navy vessels failing? Why does it take so long for newer ships to be built? Will the Royal Navy even have enough ships? These and a host of other questions, along with solutions, are contained in An Independent Report to Inform the UK National Shipbuilding Strategy as authored by Sir John Parker. This report comes out as the  House of Commons Defence Committee releases Restoring the Fleet: Naval Procurement and the National Shipbuilding Strategy that warns of low-replacement rates for the Royal Navy’s current ships. Correspondence as well as oral and written evidence generated in the issuance of the latter report are here.

The Maritime Heritage Program

August 24, 2016

In honor of the National Park Service’s 100th anniversary, I thought it appropriate to direct your attention to its Maritime Heritage Program. Here you will find a listing of maritime-related national treasures as well as documentation for reporting candidates for inclusion. Parks, historic ships, life-saving stations, and light houses are all featured.

(U.S.) Naval Studies Board

August 11, 2015

“The mission of the Naval Studies Board (NSB), created in 1974 at the request of the Chief of Naval Operations, is to be a source of independent, long-range, scientific and technical planning advice for the Naval Forces.” (about)  Its publications are here and cover a wide variety of topics, from climate change to hydroengineering. Its predecessor agency, the Office of Naval Research, has many of its documents readily available online. The difference between these two agencies is that the NSB’s board is comprised of non-military members (although some are retired Navy personnel) and operates under the umbrella of the National Research Council while the ONR resides within the military hierarchy.

Recent CRS Reports on the U.S. Maritime Topics

June 9, 2015

Navy Irregular Warfare and Counterterrorism Operations: Background and Issues for Congress; Navy Force Structure and Shipbuilding Plans: Background and Issues for Congress; Navy Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) Program: Background and Issues for Congress; Coast Guard Polar Icebreaker Modernization: Background and Issues for Congress; and Navy Shipboard Lasers for Surface, Air, and Missile Defense: Background and Issues for Congress; Coast Guard Cutter Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress; and Navy Virginia (SSN-774) Class Attack Submarine Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress. (All courtesy of Secrecy News.)

The U.S. Navy and Irregular Warfare

May 19, 2015

This brief CRS report – Navy Irregular Warfare and Counterterrorism Operations: Background and Issues for Congress – offers a succinct overview to the Navy’s role in irregular warfare and counterterrorism initiatives. It details recent events and explores the funding levels necessary to keep these activities viable.