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Navy Announces DD(X) Design Contract Winner

Navy Announces DD(X) Design Contract Winner

By Jim Garamone, American Forces Press Service.

Washington D.C. -- (AFPS) April 30, 2002 – The Navy has selected Ingalls Shipbuilding and Northrop-Grumman Ship Systems to design the next-generation DD(X) family of ships.

Assistant Navy Secretary John Young announced the $2.9 billion three-year contract April 29. Young is the assistant secretary for research development and acquisition. He was also the source selection authority for the contract.

The money goes to designing, building and testing the DD(X) destroyer and a "family" of surface ships. Navy officials see the DD(X) family at the core of surface warfare in the 21st century. The Navy will build a DD(X) destroyer -- plans call for letting that contract in fiscal 2005 -- and then use the lessons learned to build further ships in the class and to build the "future cruiser."

The DD(X) will replace the current destroyer, and the future cruiser will ultimately replace Aegis-class cruisers.

The hull design for the DD(X) will be used throughout the family of ships. In addition, the Navy will use design work on the DD(X) on the development of a coastal combat ship. The Navy mirrored development of the DD(X) on the Joint Strike Fighter model.

Ingalls and Northrop-Grumman will test the designs and weapon systems on a Spruance-class destroyer.

Gas turbine engines capable of a sustained speed of 30 knots will propel the DD(X). It will mount X-band and L-band radars and an integrated undersea warfare suite. The destroyer will carry two helicopters. It will also include stealth technologies, making it more difficult for enemies to detect.

The proposed weapon systems include a peripheral vertical launch system capable of shooting Tomahawk land-attack cruise missiles, and Sea Sparrow and Standard anti-aircraft missiles. It will also carry an advanced gun system capable of striking targets 100 miles away.

The ship will be a "total ship computing environment." This means the ship would be tied into a network and have all combat systems fully integrated. It will also allow the Navy to cut the crew size. Plans call for the DD(X) to have a crew of around 125 to start, dropping to 95.

Bath Iron Works, which led the losing team, will be part of the Ingalls-Northrop Grumman team. This ensures Bath Iron Works will have the ability to produce a detailed DD(X) design and build these ships in the future. BIW would compete with Ingalls for building the ships.

Young said the DD(X) to be built in 2005 would be the first of a new class of ships. He said it won't be just a test bed, but a serving member of the fleet upon completion.

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Directeur de la publication : Joël-François Dumont
Comité de rédaction : Jacques de Lestapis, Hugues Dumont, François de Vries (Bruxelles), Hans-Ulrich Helfer (Suisse), Michael Hellerforth (Allemagne).
Comité militaire : VAE Guy Labouérie (†), GAA François Mermet (2S), CF Patrice Théry (Asie).