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Surface Navy 2022: New US Navy surface naval plan includes focus on maintenance changes

The new US Navy surface naval plan, “Surface Warfare: The Competitive Edge,” released during the Surface Navy Association National Symposium, which started 11 January in Arlington, Virginia, calls on sailors and offices to review the way they maintain their ships and platforms.

“We will think differently about the fleet we have, and we will consider ways of getting more out of it,” the plan said.

“More ready ships means harnessing the power of data analytics to anticipate maintenance and modernisation requirements that then translate into well-defined, well-executed work packages,” the plan noted.

“More ready ships means taking a fresh look at how we schedule maintenance and modernisation, with an eye toward more frequent, shorter periods that deliver higher operational availability, while strengthening and reforming the industrial base,” the plan said.

More ready ships means being more effective in planning and executing complex depot-level modernisation periods, according to the plan.

“More ready ships means evaluating just what ‘ready' means and considering certification schemes that provide sufficient combat effectiveness and safety without holding the force to a one-size-fits-all notion of readiness. More ready ships means continuing to improve our spare parts processes, to include those that should be carried aboard, those that should be stockpiled strategically, and replacing high failure parts with better, more reliable options.”

As part of the effort, the plan calls for a new view of its shipyards and contractors, saying, “We will begin to treat our shipyards and Tier 2 and 3 suppliers as national assets and track their health and readiness more closely so that we do not find ourselves in dire straits when key manufacturers exit the industry.”

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