'A Failure of the Navy:' Next CNO Addresses Problems with New Carrier (excerpt)
(Source: Military.com; posted July 31, 2019)
By Gina Harkins
The admiral tapped to lead the Navy did not hold back when questioned by lawmakers about a host of problems that have delayed the delivery of a new aircraft carrier and pushed it far over budget.
Vice Adm. Michael Gilday faced tough questions from lawmakers about big problems aboard the $13 billion aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford during his Senate confirmation hearing to serve as the next chief of naval operations.
Republican Sen. Jim Inhofe, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, even went as far as to say the problems with the ship's weapons elevators, a dual-band radar, and catapults and arresting gear that launch and catch aircraft on the flight deck "ought to be criminal."
Though Gilday highlighted some of the progress the Navy has made in getting the ship's radar and catapult and arresting gear squared away, he acknowledged that there are serious lessons to be learned from the way the new technologies were developed. That includes the service's decision not to test the elevators that carry ordnance up to the flight deck ashore before installing them on the first in the new line of Ford-class carriers.
"Ultimately, I would consider that a failure of the Navy," Gilday said. (end of excerpt)
Click here for the full story, on the Military.com website.
On Costliest U.S. Warship Ever, Navy Can’t Get Munitions on Deck (excerpt)
(Source: Bloomberg News; published July 30, 2019)
By Anthony Capaccio
Only two of 11 elevators needed to lift munitions to the deck of the U.S. Navy’s new $13 billion aircraft carrier have been installed, according to a Navy veteran who serves on a key House committee.
“I don’t see an end in sight right now” to getting all the elevators working on the USS Gerald R. Ford, the costliest warship ever, Democratic Representative Elaine Luria of Virginia said in an interview. The ship was supposed to be delivered with the Advanced Weapons Elevators, which are moved by magnets rather than cables, working in May 2017.
It’s another setback for contractor Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc. -- and for the Navy, which had said in December it planned to complete installation and testing of all 11 elevators before the Ford completed its post-delivery shakedown phase this month, with at least half certified for operation.
Instead, the shakedown phase has been extended to October and the vessel won’t have all the elevators installed -- much less functioning -- by then, according to Luria, a 20-year Navy surface warfare officer whose served on two aircraft carriers and as shore maintenance coordinator for a third. (end of excerpt)
Click here for the full story, on the Bloomberg News website.