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The first 28 Arleigh Burke-class destroyers have a helicopter deck but no hanger or embarked helicopters. Ships in production Flight IIA, starting with USS OSCAR AUSTIN (DDG-79), also have landing and hangar facilities for operation of two multi-purpose Light Airborne Multipurpose System LAMPS MK III helicopters. This capability will be added for the remaining 29 ships of the class. The modifications require removal of Harpoon missile capability. The addition of a helicopter hangar and the upgraded baseline 6.1 AEGIS Combat System are two of the most significant upgrades. Also beginning with this ship, the number of VLS cells will be increased from 90 to 96, and the Phalanx close-in weapon system will be replaced by vertical-launched the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Evolved Sea Sparrow missiles when they become available.
RAM weapon systems are integrated with the AN/SWY-2 combat system on certain ships and as part of the Ship Self Defense System (SSDS) on other ships ('___'-41 class ships at this time). The AN/SWY-2 is comprised of the weapon system and the combat direction system. The combat direction system employs the existing Mk 23 target acquisition system (TAS) radar and the AN/SLQ-32(V) electronic warfare support sensor together with threat evaluation and weapons assignment software resident in the Mk 23 TAS to accomplish threat detection, correlation, evaluation, and engagement. With SSDS, RAM is part of the engagement suite. For example, on '___' 41-class ships, a typical SSDS engagement suite includes RAM, the Phalanx Close-In Weapon System Block 1A, and the decoy launch system. SSDS further integrates the AN/SPS-49(V)1 radar with the medium PRF upgrade, the AN/SPS-67 surface search radar, the AN/SLQ-32(V) sensor, and the CIWS search radar.
In 2006, cruisers will begin the process of being upgraded through the Cruiser Modernization program. Cruiser Modernization is a cost effective means to sustain or increase force structure and deploy new vital capabilities sooner. All cruisers in the fleet with the exception of CGs 47-51, will eventually go through modernization. Cruiser Modernization will improve warfighting capability by providing systems upgrades including Cooperative Engagement Capability and the AN/SQQ-89A(V)15 with Multi-Function Towed Array. Cruiser Modernization also provides a viable platform for future Ballistic Missile Defense missions. A comprehensive service life extension work package, which includes the All-Electric Modification, SMARTSHIP upgrades, hull, mechanical, and electrical system upgrades, and a Type Commanders maintenance work-package, is included in modernization.
CG modernization begins in FY 2006. The first ship scheduled to undergo modernization is USS Cape St. George (CG 71). The remaining 21 baseline 2, 3 and 4 cruisers have varying capabilities. The cruiser conversion program will result in all 22 ships having a common warfighting baseline. Improvements include quality of life initiatives, better weapon systems, SmartShip upgrades, remote monitoring capabilities, force protection upgrades, optimal manning, open architecture, and many other improvements.
Originally posted by ch1466
We need a class of ship that uses SWATH or SLICE technology to provide good seakeeping along with sustained 50 knot 'supercruise' and about 50-100 men aboard, tops. It needs to have modular mission systems to support the SWO daddies and a _DEEP_ VLS capacity to accomodate a range of new missions, not least of which being over the horizon Air Defense and Hypersonic Cruise.
Most importantly, it needs, either in and of itself or through theater based HALE options, the ability to self-target across a 1,000nm wide sphere of influence without the support of a big deck. i.e. a deep reaching, jet speed, VTOL, RISTA drone.
The concept of Sea Based Theater Air and Missile Defense (TAMD) is founded on emerging concepts related to Network Centric Operations (NCO). TAMD is based on enduring naval roles (forward presence, deterrence, crisis response, and projection of combat power) and on synergism that arises through the networking of complementary offensive and defensive capabilities. It builds combat power from the rapid networking of geographically dispersed warfighters, capitalizing upon significant improvements in weapons, sensor and information technologies to achieve non-linear increases in defensive capability.
Under the March 2005 version of the Navy's 30-Year Fleet Plan, the Navy plans to operate1 8 CG(X) cruisers, a derivative of the DD(X) devoted to ballistic missile defense. The CG(X) will be required to create the missile-defense force structure for the next 20 to 30 years. CG(X) is on the horizon in about 10 years as the next step in the process.
The CG(X) cruiser will replace the Ticonderoga class AEGIS cruisers. The CG(X) will provide an “umbrella” of air and missile defense with longer -range missiles, protecting carrier strike groups and the other DD(X) vessels. It will also be able to track and engage ballistic missiles hundreds of miles inland. Currently the CG(X) is in the design phase. Like the DD(X), CG(X) will have many advanced features not found on present Navy vessels.
Block IIIA, a modification to this version, extends capability to even lower altitudes. RIM-66C Block IIIA includes a new warhead that imparts greater velocity to warhead fragments in the direction of the target.
Block IIIB is the next step in the continuing evolution of the Standard Missile family, incorporating an infrared (IR) guidance mode capability developed in Missile Homing Improvement Program (MHIP) with the radio frequency (RF) semi-active guidance system of the proven SM-2 Block IIIA. The MHIP dual-mode RF/IR guidance capability is being incorporated to counter a specific fielded and proliferating electronic warfare systems in existing aircraft and ASCM threats. OPEVAL of SM-2 Block IIIB was conducted during April 1996, with missile firings by an Aegis cruiser that was completing workup training for deployment. Based on OPEVAL results, SM-2 Block IIIB is operationally effective and suitable.
On 24 February 2005 the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) Weapon System and Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) destroyed a ballistic missile outside the earth's atmosphere during an Aegis BMD Program flight test over the Pacific Ocean. The Feb. 24 mission -- the fifth successful intercept for SM-3 -- was the first firing of the Aegis BMD "Emergency Deployment" capability using operational versions of the SM-3 Block I missile and Aegis BMD Weapon System. This was also the first test to exercise SM-3's third stage rocket motor (TSRM) single-pulse mode. The TSRM has two pulses, which can be ignited independently, providing expansion of the ballistic missile engagement battlespace. The SM-3 was launched from the Aegis BMD cruiser USS Lake Erie (CG 70) and hit a target missile that had been launched from the U.S. Navy's Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai, Hawaii.
The DD(X) National Team and the Navy conducted the third consecutive successful guided-flight test of the 155mm Long Range Land Attack Projectile (LRLAP) June 16.
Preliminary results indicate the munition successfully conducted preplanned maneuvers along a 60 nautical mile flight path during the 280-second flight.
“This important test highlights another successful milestone to develop and field long-range, GPS-precise gun munitions for our fleet,” said Rear Adm. Charles Hamilton, the program executive officer for ships. “The success of LRLAP is vital to our efforts to deliver DD(X) to the fleet as planned. Each one of these shots brings us closer to that goal.”
“The DD(X) development team, both in the Navy and industry, continues to make major strides to demonstrate critical new capabilities such as LRLAP for DD(X),“ according to Capt. Charles Goddard, the DD(X) program manager. “Our rigorous development and test program is focused using prototype systems to fully evaluate and mature these technologies for DD(X) and other future ships.”