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New USN CVL

Cordy

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Surprised the amphibs only 12% cheaper per ton than the CVNs built at NNS with its high overheads driven by nuclear costs, tends to confirm the impression that both BIW and Ingalls yards expensive,
But those overhead cost wouldn't be reflected in the NAVSEA cost/ton metric. Those costs tend to show up in plan costs and ECO.

Of interest In the Navy briefing on Bonhomme Richard in December prior to the scrapping quoted $4.1 billion as the replacement cost, which will include the shipyard overheads. At at first look makes it look very expensive ship if built in US, compared to the QNLZ, a 60% larger ship cost the same, would inflation account for the difference?

the CBO and CRS both expressed incredulity at the Fincantieri costs for the new Constellation frigates
The believed drivers for non-CV/amphib surface combatant costs are outfit density and power density; Constellation is bad on both counts.
So some skepticism there is warranted. But that has nothing to do with CVs.
CBO base estimates on lightweight displacement cost per ton, using actuals of current surface combatants, Burkes and LCS, costs driven partly by density, Constellation is a lower density ship than a Burke who have over the years been burdened with more equipment eg with Flight III have had to resort to relocating an accommodation block on the rear weapons deck so as to make more room for the additional hardware needed below weapons deck to support the new SPY-6 radar.

CBO estimate 40% above Fincantieri/Navy Constellation contract price using their metrics, when challenged CBO claim their justification for the 40% uplift was the addition of 300t of steel to the FREMM for Constellation which would make it more complicated to build, but 40%? The 2015 Italian contract for 9th and 10th FREMMs was 764 million euros ~$930 million, ~$470 milion each, Navy contract for Constellation $870 million each if all ten contracted.
Fincantieri contested the CBO and CRS figures, it has a long history in building cruise ships on time and cost
Their cost overruns on LCS notwithstanding apparently.

Freedom class prime contractor was Lockheed and the naval architects Gibbs and Cox, with Constellation Fincantieri are both the prime contractor and naval architect for ship giving them control.
If using the newer HSLA steel which saying is a very labor intensive to weld and if not be suitable for robotic welding would not it be a better trade off to use thicker commercial weldable steels eg DH36/EH36 controlled rolled and normalized, heat treated to stress relive the steel to give necessary toughness as used in the UK carriers) understand Far Eastern and European shipyards now able to weld hull with robotic production lines and even mention of spider automatic robots for assembly and welding.
I don't see anything preventing the automation of HSLA welding beyond the fixed-costs of automation.
IIRC, toughness scales at the square root of thickness so achieving the much higher toughness of HSLA requires
a much greater than linear amount of material. Not sure that really saves any money.

Of interest found some comments on Google by Ray D

HSLA is comparatively much worse as an armor material than the entire HY-series, possessing a relatively low hardness, lower UTS, and inability to be produced in thickness - in addition to costing more than HY-80 to begin with. Practically the only advantage of HSLA is its weldability.

The HY series of USN metal standards actually derives their names from their respective Yield Strengths. HY-80 steel is High Yield 80 ksi (thousand lbs/in^2) Steel, whereas HY-100 steel is High Yield 100 ksi Steel, meaning HY-100 has a 25% higher yield strength. This is actually slightly misleading when it comes to a material's protective value. Yield Strength is the capability of a material to withstand compressive force and return to its original form, for example the strength of a wall to hold up a roof. Essentially it's structural strength.

When considering for armor steel, however, the values you have to pay attention to are Ultimate Tensile Strength and Hardness. Ultimate Tensile Strength (UTS) is, simply put, the amount of force a given metal can resist before it is torn apart, ether by a vice or a projectile slamming into it. Hardness is, for most purposes, an obvious effect and I won't spent the character limit breaking it down. For HY-80/100, these values are a lot closer than their Yield Strengths.

HY-80 has a Rockwell Hardness of 20 and a UTS of 100ksi.
HY-100 has a Rockwell Hardness of 21 and a UTS of 115ksi.
A roughly 13% difference.
So, yes, HY-100 can easily be a significantly better armor material than HY-80, and the nearly Titanium-like HY-130 doing even better... when employed in significant enough thicknesses for that to make a difference. When you are dealing with thinner sheets, such as hull plating, it is generally more economical to design the ship around using a slightly thicker sheet of HY-80 than HY-100 unless the yield strength of the metal is going to come into play, such as with Submarines - and even then, we used to build Submarines out of HY-80. You end up with a slightly heavier ship, a few tons, but it presents a much more economical building plan.



 

marauder2048

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Of interest In the Navy briefing on Bonhomme Richard in December prior to the scrapping quoted $4.1 billion as the replacement cost, which will include the shipyard overheads. At at first look makes it look very expensive ship if built in US, compared to the QNLZ, a 60% larger ship cost the same, would inflation account for the difference?
$4.1 billion is total ship cost. And looks to be scaled from LHA-8. Then it comes down to different materials/construction methods.
Ex: LHA uses HY-100 for the flight deck steel vs. the commercial steel (can't remember the grade) used on QNLZ's deck.


CBO base estimates on lightweight displacement cost per ton, using actuals of current surface combatants, Burkes and LCS, costs driven partly by density, Constellation is a lower density ship than a Burke who have over the years been burdened with more equipment eg with Flight III have had to resort to relocating an accommodation block on the rear weapons deck so as to make more room for the additional hardware needed below weapons deck to support the new SPY-6 radar.
The off-array SPY-6 additional hardware isn't likely to differ all that much between SPY-6(v)1 and SPY-6(v)3.
The outfit density and power density for Constellation is much closer (and in the power case worse) to Burke than to its
parent design or any other design. Again, outfit/power density aren't cost drivers of LHA/CVs so...

Freedom class prime contractor was Lockheed and the naval architects Gibbs and Cox, with Constellation Fincantieri are both the prime contractor and naval architect for ship giving them control.
It's the same shipyard; the outfit density/power density will drive labor hours/overhead. So the cost comparisons are valid.

Of interest found some comments on Google by Ray D
There isn't a large difference on the UTS front between HY and HSLA. And HSLA tends to have better
toughness than the comparable HY and Rockwell hardness (what I could find) looks very similar.
Neither are employed in a manner to resist penetration by an ASCM. Rather, they try to contain/resist blast, fragments and fires.
 

Cordy

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CBO base estimates on lightweight displacement cost per ton, using actuals of current surface combatants, Burkes and LCS, costs driven partly by density, Constellation is a lower density ship than a Burke who have over the years been burdened with more equipment eg with Flight III have had to resort to relocating an accommodation block on the rear weapons deck so as to make more room for the additional hardware needed below weapons deck to support the new SPY-6 radar.
The off-array SPY-6 additional hardware isn't likely to differ all that much between SPY-6(v)1 and SPY-6(v)3.
The outfit density and power density for Constellation is much closer (and in the power case worse) to Burke than to its
parent design or any other design. Again, outfit/power density aren't cost drivers of LHA/CVs so.

There is a massive difference between the Burke SPY-6(V)1 and the Constellation SPY(V)3, the Constellation SPY-6(V)3 in only one fifth size of the Burke SPY-6(V)1, the SPY-6 is a scalable radar made up of 2'x 2' RMAs, the (V)1 has (4 x 37) 148 RMAs whereas the Constellation (V)3 (3 x 9) only 27 RMAs.

To fit SPY-6(V)1 radar to the Flight III, with its big increase in power required compared to SPY-1, one of the changes in the Flight III was the additional cooling required for the (V)1, the air conditioning capacity had to be increased from five 200-ton plants to five 300 ton machines.

Freedom class prime contractor was Lockheed and the naval architects Gibbs and Cox, with Constellation Fincantieri are both the prime contractor and naval architect for ship giving them control.
It's the same shipyard; the outfit density/power density will drive labor hours/overhead. So the cost comparisons are valid.

Disagree, Fincantieri shipyards have a long history of delivering cruise liners and warships on time and cost, as far as know no US shipyard has the knowhow/competitiveness/efficiency to build and sell large ships on the world market.

Of interest found some comments on Google by Ray D
There isn't a large difference on the UTS front between HY and HSLA. And HSLA tends to have better
toughness than the comparable HY and Rockwell hardness (what I could find) looks very similar.
Neither are employed in a manner to resist penetration by an ASCM. Rather, they try to contain/resist blast, fragments and fires.

Agree armor used to contain/resist blast, fragments and fires, but Ray D explicitly said "HSLA is comparatively much worse as an armor material than the entire HY-series, possessing a relatively low hardness, lower UTS, and inability to be produced in thickness - in addition to costing more than HY-80 to begin with. Practically the only advantage of HSLA is its weldability." Ray D comes across as a professional which contradicts what your saying, you may also be an expert in steel, I certainly don't have the technical expertize to judge.
 

marauder2048

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There is a massive difference between the Burke SPY-6(V)1 and the Constellation SPY(V)3, the Constellation SPY-6(V)3 in only one fifth size of the Burke SPY-6(V)1, the SPY-6 is a scalable radar made up of 2'x 2' RMAs, the (V)1 has (4 x 37) 148 RMAs whereas the Constellation (V)3 (3 x 9) only 27 RMAs.
Note the distinction I made between on-array (RMA) and off-array equipment. The off-array equipment is substantially the same
since it doesn't contribute to array cost which is completely dominated by TRIMM/RMAs.

FFG(X) has claimed power/cooling provisions comparable to a Flight III Burke which implies a much worse power density.

Disagree, Fincantieri shipyards have a long history of delivering cruise liners and warships on time and cost, as far as know no US shipyard has the knowhow/competitiveness/efficiency to build and sell large ships on the world market.
None of which changes the fact that they are building a much denser (outfit/power) warship to a very different standard.
That and their previous record on LCS should give one pause.

"HSLA is comparatively much worse as an armor material than the entire HY-series, possessing a relatively low hardness, lower UTS, and inability to be produced in thickness - in addition to costing more than HY-80 to begin with. Practically the only advantage of HSLA is its weldability.
There are published datasheets and lots of scholarly/industry papers on HSLA and HY. There's been extensive use of HSLA
over the last 25 years. He's totally wrong about HSLA thickness and cost. About the only thing that I've seen that really differs in terms of
material properties seems to be yield strength as a percentage of UTS. Since I didn't make any claims about HY/HSLA suitability for armor
I'm not sure how I can be contradicted. It's all about ballistic tolerance and structural integrity under duress. And in the end, we
are contrasting two USN spec/non-commerical steel grades so....
 

Cordy

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There is a massive difference between the Burke SPY-6(V)1 and the Constellation SPY(V)3, the Constellation SPY-6(V)3 in only one fifth size of the Burke SPY-6(V)1, the SPY-6 is a scalable radar made up of 2'x 2' RMAs, the (V)1 has (4 x 37) 148 RMAs whereas the Constellation (V)3 (3 x 9) only 27 RMAs.
Note the distinction I made between on-array (RMA) and off-array equipment. The off-array equipment is substantially the same
since it doesn't contribute to array cost which is completely dominated by TRIMM/RMAs.

FFG(X) has claimed power/cooling provisions comparable to a Flight III Burke which implies a much worse power density.

You have to look behind the headlines, both ships have ability to generate ~11/12MW of electric power, Burkes three GTGs power purely for its radar and other weapon systems plus hotel loads whereas Constellation four DGs power mainly used for its HED propulsion with shaft mounted electric motors, 7MW?, to give ~16/17 knots before it has to bring its single LM2500 GT online. Burke has seven GTs, four LM2500 and three AG9160 GTGs, Constellation one GT, LM2500 and four DGs plus its drives and electric motors

Disagree, Fincantieri shipyards have a long history of delivering cruise liners and warships on time and cost, as far as know no US shipyard has the knowhow/competitiveness/efficiency to build and sell large ships on the world market.
None of which changes the fact that they are building a much denser (outfit/power) warship to a very different standard.
That and their previous record on LCS should give one pause.

Density and Cost

Rear Adm. Paul Schlise, head of the Navy’s Surface Warfare Division, said at the virtual SNA 2021 on Tuesday, speaking on the LSC, ref the Burkes “We’ve done about all we can do with this ship and we’ve maxed out the space, weight, power and cooling, “It’s time to reset to a new large surface combatant hull.”

Burke only a third larger than Constellation, but has three times the number VLS cells, the 5" main gun fires a shell five times the weight of the 57mm shell, a very large hull mounted sonar, AN/SQS-53C/D, no HMS on Constellation but a VDS which much simpler to install, etc and as pointed out previously its SPY-6 (V)1 is five times the power the Constellation SPY-6 (V)3 and the Burke (V)1 needing five 300 ton air conditioning plants, the Constellation (V)3 will need approx of only a single equivalent of one of the five 300 ton plants, so the off-array costs should be substantially less expensive.

Constellation will be substantially less dense ship and makes for simpler design and build than a Burke, will make it easier and cheaper to build.
"HSLA is comparatively much worse as an armor material than the entire HY-series, possessing a relatively low hardness, lower UTS, and inability to be produced in thickness - in addition to costing more than HY-80 to begin with. Practically the only advantage of HSLA is its weldability.
There are published datasheets and lots of scholarly/industry papers on HSLA and HY. There's been extensive use of HSLA
over the last 25 years. He's totally wrong about HSLA thickness and cost. About the only thing that I've seen that really differs in terms of
material properties seems to be yield strength as a percentage of UTS. Since I didn't make any claims about HY/HSLA suitability for armor
I'm not sure how I can be contradicted. It's all about ballistic tolerance and structural integrity under duress. And in the end, we
are contrasting two USN spec/non-commerical steel grades so....
Appreciate if you could ref to the industry papers
 

marauder2048

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You have to look behind the headlines, both ships have ability to generate ~11/12MW of electric power, Burkes three GTGs power purely for its radar and other weapon systems plus hotel loads whereas Constellation four DGs power mainly used for its HED propulsion with shaft mounted electric motors, 7MW?, to give ~16/17 knots before it has to bring its single LM2500 GT online. Burke has seven GTs, four LM2500 and three AG9160 GTGs, Constellation one GT, LM2500 and four DGs plus its drives and electric motors
The power density metric is rather indifferent to how it's generated because its mostly premised on the complexity of conditioning/routing/switching
and by implication cooling.

I'm curious how you are going to connect this to CVLs since power density is not a cost drive there.

Rear Adm. Paul Schlise, head of the Navy’s Surface Warfare Division, said at the virtual SNA 2021 on Tuesday, speaking on the LSC, ref the Burkes “We’ve done about all we can do with this ship and we’ve maxed out the space, weight, power and cooling, “It’s time to reset to a new large surface combatant hull.”
Which is why the CBO report you cited was comparing Constellation to the earlier Burke classes.
so the off-array costs should be substantially less expensive.
The off-array equipment is pretty much everything shown here that's not an octagon or an RMA.
There will be some simplification since you only have three faces vs. four.
450px-AMDR-System-Overview-1.jpg

And you still need all of the same 1000 VDC routing/switching/conditioning. Those all need power, shock-hardened mounts
and those all need to be cooled. And FFG(X) already has built in cooling margins for growth which would
put in close to the AB IIIs. So that's already common to both.

Again, curious how you're going to bring this around to CVLs since none of the above drives their cost.
Appreciate if you could ref to the industry papers
One attached.
 

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Cordy

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@marauder2048 Thanks for your atachment on HLSA

Re the SPY-6 variants and costs, checked the PB FY2021 Navy Justification, Shipbuilding and Conversion, Navy
Burke Flight III - SPY-6 (V)1 - 148 RMAs $169.2 million
FFG - EASR / SPY-6(V)3 - 27 RMAs $59.2 million
LPD Flight II EASR / SPY-6(V)2 - 9 RAMAs $35.0 million

Figures show (V)3 has 18% of capability at cost of 35% of (V)1, (V)2 6% capability at cost of 21% of (V)1. You had previously said the off-array equipment is substantially the same, which agree with, but think with lower power costs will decrease, whatever the figures show (V)3 is $110 million cheaper than the (V)1 and that will be reflected in a lower cost per ton of the FFG compared to the Burke Flight III.

Navy spends much more of its budget on O&M, which excludes personnel costs, than SCN, why think CBO metric of build cost per light ton is a very crude metric to measure ships costs, sustainment ship costs far more than build, did see figures for coast guard ships of ~250% of build, have seen no figures from Navy breaking out sustainment cost by ship/class, Burkes difficult to maintain as so dense, an old 80's design using planned maintenance when world has moved onto new tech condition based maintenance, its propulsion is gas guzzling GT if not operating at 90+% rpm limiting range, so would not be surprised if sustainment cost 350+% or more of its build costs.

Think H_K set it out best in his earlier post of how to control costs of CVL compared to the disaster which is Ford.
Assuming the driver for a CVL compared to CVN’s, is to try to bring carrier costs back to 1980's levels to enable Navy to fund larger and more balanced fleet? In the 1980s, the carrier strike group cost about 14 percent of the total Navy operating cost. Today it’s 31 percent."

Yes this is the crux of the issue - the modern carrier force has become too gold plated to its own good (much like the rest of the USN surface combattant force).

Sadly I don’t think smaller carriers are the answer. They may be part of the answer, but what is needed is a complete 360 rethink of how the USN does carrier warfare:

- Propulsion: Nuclear power is simply uneconomic. The USN needs much better reasons why it continues to cut into other higher priority items like hull numbers to pay for such a capability.

- EMALS, AAG and the fancy new weapons elevators are uneconomic, much like all the other electromagnetic toys that have never proven their worth (rail gun etc). The USN needs to revisit why steam cats and hydraulic systems won’t do until the technology matures.

- Manning is still way too high.

- Shipyards: it’s time to put pressure on Newport News’ monopoly on carrier building. Give some / all the work to other yards like NASSCO.

- Build rates: Investigate the benefits of increasing the build rate.

- Simpler, not smaller, carriers: Maximise systems commonality with other ships (like DDG-1000 propulsion and FFG(X) sensors and combat system). Aim for as few bespoke systems as possible, ruthlessly eliminate any hint of gold plating.

- Reduce forward presence: if this can be done by fewer CVBGs or smaller CVBGs then do it to save on operating costs.

- Increase focus on dual carrier ops for high-intensity warfare... stop trying to cram all the capability you need in only one hull.

If the above approach comes back with a recommendation for slightly smaller, cheaper carriers (60,000-80,000 tons), then so much the better, but don’t start with carrier size as the main objective.
 

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