US GAO confirms concerns with US Navy Conventional Prompt Strike platform scheduling

by Michael Fabey

A new US government report cites concerns about installing hypersonic missile equipment on the USS Zumwalt . (Janes/Michael Fabey)

Both US Navy (USN) vessel platforms lined up for the service's first Conventional Prompt Strike (CPS) deployments face issues with scheduling and development, according to a US Government Accountability Office (GAO) report released on 8 June.

The first USN platform lined up for the CPS weapon system is the guided-missile destroyer, USS Zumwalt (DDG 1000).

The navy requested about USD160 million in research, development, test, and evaluation funds across fiscal years (FYs) 2022 and 2023 to support the CPS hypersonic weapon system's incorporation into DDG 1000-class ships, the GAO said in its annual report on major Pentagon acquisition programmes.

“According to the programme, it continued engineering design planning to support CPS integration initiated last year,” the GAO reported. “This includes plans to replace the ship's advanced gun system with the CPS hypersonic weapon. The navy plans to install the hypersonic weapon system on the DDG 1000 during a maintenance period in fiscal year 2024.”

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First two Turkish Navy Akhisar-class OPVs launched

by Cem Devrim Yaylali

The first two Akhisar-class OPVs for the Turkish Navy were launched at Istanbul Naval Shipyard on 23 September. (Devrim Yaylali)

The first pair of Akhisar (modified MILGEM)-class offshore patrol vessels (OPVs) under construction for the Turkish Navy were launched at Istanbul Naval Shipyard on 23 September.

First steel for first-of-class Akhisar (P 1220) was cut in August 2021, and work on second ship Koçhisar (P 1221) started in November 2022. Under current planning, Akhisar is scheduled to be delivered on 9 June 2024, followed by Koçhisar on 9 October 2024.

Based on a modified MILGEM design with a ‘fitted for but not with' concept, the class has an overall length of 99.56 m, a beam of 14.42 m, a draft of 3.77 m, and a full load displacement of 2,300 tonnes.

The ships are powered by a combined diesel-electric or diesel (CODELOD) hybrid propulsion system, consisting of four diesel generators and two electric motors driving two shafts with controllable pitch propellers. The OPVs will have a maximum speed of 24 kt and a range of 4,500 n mile at 12 kt.

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SubSea Craft's Victa diver delivery unit achieves ‘proof-of-concept' certification

by Kate Tringham

The Victa DDU prototype is pictured during proof-of-concept trials, which were conducted at SubSea Craft's T3 facility in Portland, Dorset, in June and July 2023. (SubSea Craft)

The first prototype for SubSea Craft's Victa diver delivery unit (DDU) has achieved proof-of-concept certification after completing a series of advanced sea trials at the company's trials, testing, and training (T3) facility in Portland, Dorset.

The milestone, which was completed in July, has paved the way to start manufacture of the second unit, which will be a production-standard vessel, SubSea Craft's CEO Scott Verney told Janes.

The company has started demonstrating Victa to potential customers while continuing with waterborne trials as it continues to optimise the craft.

“Achieving proof of concept has vindicated our digital-first approach and our flexibility to changing technology as time has gone by, so we're pleased with that,” Verney said. “And while it's a huge milestone, and we're incredibly proud of it, we continue to evolve [and] we continue to enhance and make our capabilities better as our clients move forward and as the world changes.”

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ASEAN navies omit live-firing activities at inaugural joint exercise

by Ridzwan Rahmat

The Royal Brunei Navy Darussalam-class offshore patrol vessel, KDB Darulehsan , one of three visiting vessels taking part in the inaugural ASEAN multilateral naval exercise, which is being hosted by Indonesia. (US Navy)

Navies at the inaugural Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) multilateral naval exercise will not take part in any live-firing serials throughout the activity, Janes has learnt.

The drills, which have been dubbed as ‘ASEAN Solidarity Exercise in Natuna (ASEX-01 N) 2023', are the first multilateral naval exercise to be carried out exclusively for navies in the ASEAN bloc.

It is being hosted by the Indonesian Navy at various locations across the Riau Archipelago. A harbour phase of the exercise began on 18 September in Batam and a sea phase is being held from 20 to 23 September in the southern extremes of the South China Sea.

When the exercise was first announced in June 2023, Indonesian Armed Forces Chief Admiral Yudo Margono described the exercise as one that would validate the combat capabilities of all 10 navies across ASEAN.

However, exercise documents provided to Janes

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Both US Navy (USN) vessel platforms lined up for the service's first Conventional Prompt Strike (CPS...

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