Skip to comments.Top architect proposes new type of frigate for the Navy
Posted on 07/27/2011 9:30:14 PM PDT by sukhoi-30mki
Top architect proposes new type of frigate for the Navy
The nations leading independent naval architectural firm has been quietly gauging whether senior Navy officials are interested in a new class of frigate that would be smaller and lighter replacement for the aging ships now being phased out of service.
The new 3,500-ton "light frigates" would be more heavily armed than previous models and be capable of carrying out a variety of missions over a wide area of the worlds oceans.
Gibbs & Cox of Arlington, Va., says it has produced concept drawings for a roughly 400-foot steel-hull, twin-propellor, diesel-powered light frigate that would be capable of firing Tomahawk cruise missiles as well as Standard IIIs, missiles that can be used for ballistic missile defense. The ship also would feature sophisticated phased-radar.
The Navys Cold War-era Perry-class frigates, including the six in San Diego, no longer fire missiles.
The new ship concept calls for a vessel with a crew of 75 to 110, which is far smaller than the 180-200 people who operate the Perry-class frigates. The ship would have a range of roughly 7,000 miles, and a draft of about 20 feet, meaning that it could get into shallower water than existing frigates, but not quite as shallow as the Navys new and troubled littoral combat ship. The company has yet to release a drawing of the concept ship, or say how much it might cost to build.
Gibbs & Cox has provided the design for more than 6,000 ships over the past 80 years, including the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, which is currently the work horse of the Navy, and the Perry-class frigates. The company also designed the San Diego-based Freedom, the lead ship in the Freedom-class littoral combat ship program. It did not design the Independence-class LCS ships.
The Navy revealed on Tuesday that the first 12 LCS vessels will be homeported in San Diego.
Rick Biben, the companys president and chief executive, said Wednesday, We are not competing with any existing design. Were looking at what the Navy might need in the future, and were working to expand our portfolio of ships.
Biben stressed that light frigate is not meant to be a competitor to the troubled LCS. Earlier this year, Freedom experienced a crack in its hull, alarming members of Congress. More recently, the Independence was reported to have aggressive corrosion in and around its propulsion system.
The problems led a bipartisan group of six U.S. senators to ask for a formal review of LCS. And Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Alpine, has suggested that it might be smart to rebid some LCS contracts because the ships will cost at least twice as much as originally planned.
Eric Midboe, vice program of program management at Gibbs & Cox, said Wednesday that the light frigate would be a conventional, shock-hardened ship whose hull would be similar to those seen on modern Coast Guard frigates.
Gibbs&Cox has been developing a concept for a light frigate that would be smaller and lighter than the sort of Perry-class frigate (the USS Gary) shown here.
Can it take down the 25 illiterates in a leaky boat and a machine gun that is currently terrorizing the high seas?
Will we even have a Navy at the rate we’re declining?
Sorry, we have no money.
Those things being built in Mobile are one of the main reasons why many are calling for new/alternate proposals.
I was going to say, as a soldier, I get nervous about that 20 foot draft being used to get into tight hot spots, and there only being 75 souls on board, and half of them female.
Seventy five people isn’t much to fight with, and with half of them dead from a missile strike, what’s left isn’t much of a damage control crew.
Amazing... The US Government is about to default and some azz-hats in the Pentagon are planning some new, job-justifying
Its as if they live in some other-world that has no concept of
Reality is gonna jack-slap em in the face when thier direct deposit shows 0.00 next month.
I love the military, but sometimes the career types there could use a dose of having to operate in a world where the
money supply is not endless. Like a profit and loss corp.
As for the LCS, scrap the whole friggin' idea.
I’m a non-soldier. Rereading my post I can see how a soldier might misinterpret my point. Civilians tell soldiers what the goal is.
I have no doubt soldiers could take out all the pirates in about 10 minutes.
My point is I don’t know why the civilians in charge don’t give the order to do it.
Thank you for your service.
Gun boats are good and they are cheap, but can you fight a real naval war with them? I don’t think so.
I forgot to mention ex, ex, way ex, soldier, I didn’t mean it to sound current.
My dad was on a ship that barely survived, it was so destroyed that both sides reported it sank, he described the wounded, the dead, and the extraordinary labor of simultaneously fighting fires and twisted metal, fighting the enemy, fighting to stop the flow of the ocean through the rips and holes, and at the same time trying to save the wounded and drowning, I hope the Navy isn’t overly skimpy with the number of humans on board.
Given the specifications that its designers are talking of, this ship is likely to be unaffordable in vast numbers, costing as much as the LCS. If you want to a capable workhorse, the SM-3 and Tomahawk may not be necessary. Something along the lines of Singapore’s Formidable class or South Korea’s KDX-II class ships should be adequate.
This French-designed ship supposedly costs about 300million USD a piece and comes with a highly advanced sensor suite and a crew of only 70. You could tweak it for USN use with a new CIWS or ESSM missiles; the French Herakles radar is highly sophisticated and significantly lighter than the SPY-1D.
Hmmmm . . . . . . . lessee. With the cuts zero plans to make to the military's budget, I have a feeling they are talking about something with oars . . . . . LOTS and LOTS of oars and captive rowers.
You mean the Somali pirates?
>>> I’ve been an advocate of this purported class of Frigate for years now. It is EXACTLY what the Navy needs...small crew, big numbers and advanced weapons and sensors. We need 100 of them.
In my prior posts I’ve been calling for Corvettes. Not necessarily as big as described here but with a heavy missile capability. This is the sort of thing we need. Particularly with the LCS program sliding into the abyss.
It depends on the what your operational needs are, then. Corvettes do not have the kind of the expeditionary range or can carry the kind of sensors (radar, towed sonars) that a frigate can. So heavy missile capability may well become meaningless. Besides if you are talking of stuff like anti-ship missiles, the Arleigh Burkes could in theory carry a far heavier load if the Harpoon were modified for vertical launch.
Still, trying to shoehorn SPY-1D(V) and strike lenght Mk-41 cells into a 3500 tonne ship will be interesting, to say the least.