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Pentagon budget 2022: US Navy weapons request invests in new weapons while maintaining legacy acquisitions

The proposed US Navy (USN) fiscal year (FY) 2022 budget request includes funding for future capabilities like Conventional Prompt Strike and laser systems while maintaining procurement of legacy of existing weapons.

In FY 2022, the Navy will invest about USD1.4 billion for Conventional Prompt Strike (CPS), the USN reported in its documents accompanying the proposed budget on 28 May.

The navy’s CPS programme will design a missile comprised of a Common Hypersonic Glide Body (C-HGB) and a two-stage booster. The programme is slated to reach Initial Operational Capability (IOC) FY 2028, with plans to deploy the missile on a Virginia-class attack submarine (SSN) outfitted with Virginia Payload Module.

Planned CPS efforts in FY 2022 include continued development of the weapon system and flight subsystem, platform integration, and advanced research and development to support future spiral development capabilities such as enhanced warhead, advanced communication, alternative navigation, and terminal sensor technology. Funding also supports the expansion of industrial base capacity for the recent addition of CPS capability on DDG 1000 Zumwalt-class guided-missile destroyers.

The FY 2022 budget also requests USD51.7 million for the Navy Laser Family of Systems (NLFoS), which is designated an accelerated acquisition initiative to provide near-term, ship-based laser weapon capabilities.

NLFoS includes the Surface Navy Laser Weapon System (SNLWS) and the Solid State Laser Technology Maturation (SSL-TM). SNLWS addresses anti-surface warfare and counter-intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (C-ISR) gaps with the ability to dazzle and destroy unmanned aerial systems and defeat fast inshore attack craft (FIAC).

SNLWS includes the development of an advanced prototype laser weapon system in the 60 kW or higher class. SSL-TM will develop an advanced 150 kW High Energy Laser (HEL) weapon demonstrator that will support future laser development with system capability demonstrations on San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship USS Portland (LPD 27).

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