Back to news

August 2, 2018 | International, Naval

Failure of Two Ships to Participate in RIMPAC Highlight Amphibious Readiness Gap


THE PENTAGON — The two U.S. amphibious warships that were planned to be central to the Rim of the Pacific 2018 exercises were unable to fully participate in the event due to mechanical failures that highlight continued readiness problems with the Navy's amphibious fleet.

The amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD-6) was set to lead the amphibious portion of the Rim of the Pacific 2018 exercise, but it spent the second half of the exercise tied to a pier in Pearl Harbor. USS Boxer (LHD-4) was set to be a key platform in Southern California RIMPAC SOCAL but was sidelined before the exercise.

In December, half of the Navy's 31 amphibious ships were in maintenance as a result of short-term spending bills and irregular funding, Vice Adm. Andrew Lewis, deputy chief of naval operations for operations, plans and strategy (OPNAV N3/N5), said at a House Armed Services readiness subcommittee hearing.

Bonhomme Richard was set to be the command ship for the exercise's maritime component commander, Chilean Navy Commodore Pablo Niemann Figari. However, partway through the exercise the ship suffered a propulsion casualty and came back to port, USNI News understands. Niemann, his staff and the ship's company still participated in the exercise from the pier, USNI News understands.

“USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD-6) is currently in port Pearl Harbor and is participating in RIMPAC 2018,” reads a U.S. 3rd Fleet statement to USNI News this week. Officials would not elaborate on why the ship was not underway.

Full article:

On the same subject

  • Lockheed names Taiclet next top executive

    March 16, 2020 | International, Aerospace

    Lockheed names Taiclet next top executive

    By: Aaron Mehta WASHINGTON — Lockheed Martin, the world's largest defense company, will have a new top executive come June. The company announced Monday that James Taiclet, 59, has been selected president and CEO of the company, succeeding Marillyn Hewson in those roles. Taiclet, while a member of Lockheed's board since 2018, has not worked directly inside the company before; he has served as chairman, president and CEO of American Tower Corporation, a wireless and broadcast communications infrastructure company based in Boston, Massachusetts, since 2004. Previously, he worked as president of Honeywell Aerospace Services and vice president of engine services at Pratt & Whitney. Taiclet is also a retired U.S. Air Force officer, whose biography cites more than 5,000 flying hours, including as part of the first Gulf War. “I know it is the right time to transition the leadership of Lockheed Martin. The corporation is strong, as evidenced by our outstanding financial results last year and a record backlog of business. We have a bright future — particularly with Jim and our outstanding leadership team at the helm,” Hewson said in a statement. “I'm pleased the board agreed with my recommendation. As Lockheed Martin's next CEO, Jim will lead the company forward in its next phase of growth and value creation.” Hewson took over the company in 2013, the first woman to lead Lockheed. Her ascension came as a surprise, following the sudden removal of then-Chief Operating Officer Chris Kubasik, who had been in line for the top job. Since coming into power, Hewson successfully guided the company through the U.S. budget sequestration and a major acquisition of helicopter manufacturer Sikorsky, along with getting the F-35 fighter program largely on track. “I'm honored to be asked to succeed one of the most respected CEOs in America. While serving on Lockheed Martin's board, I've not only been impressed by the company's continued growth as a leader in aerospace & defense but also by the dedication and commitment of Marillyn and Lockheed Martin employees to deliver for its customers,” Taiclet said in a statement. “As a military veteran, I understand the mission of this great company to provide global security and innovative solutions for the brave men and women who protect our freedom.” Taiclet's rise to the role of Lockheed's CEO may have been enabled due to a leave of absence by Michele Evans, Lockheed's head of aeronautics, who temporarily stepped back from that position in September due to an undisclosed medical issue. Evans, age 53, was considered a rising star in the pool of Lockheed executives, having rose through the ranks of Lockheed's aeronautics, sustainment, and integrated warfare systems and sensors divisions. She was widely considered a possible successor to Hewson. As follow-on moves, Frank St. John, 53, was elected by the board to serve as chief operating officer of Lockheed; St. John is currently executive vice president of Lockheed Martin's Rotary and Mission Systems division. Replacing him is Stephanie Hill, 55, the current senior vice president for Enterprise Business Transformation. All the moves are effective June 15. According to the Defense News Top 100 list, Lockheed Martin has been the top defense contractor in the world for 20 straight years. Lockheed's $50.5 billion in defense revenue in fiscal 2018 represented about 10 percent of the Top 100's total defense revenues, and dramatically outpaced the No. 2 company on the list, Boeing, which brought in $34 billion in defense revenue.

  • US Army official reveals watercraft, networks as logistics focus areas

    April 11, 2023 | International, Other Defence

    US Army official reveals watercraft, networks as logistics focus areas

    The Army is taking steps to master contested logistics by focusing on key modernization requirements taking shape now.

  • Raytheon will participate in Army missile defense radar ‘sense-off’

    February 25, 2019 | International, Land, C4ISR

    Raytheon will participate in Army missile defense radar ‘sense-off’

    By: Jill Aitoro WASHINGTON — Raytheon will participate in a missile defense radar “sense-off” to test designs that could be included in the U.S. Army's Integrated Air and Missile Defense system under development. The Army announced plans for the sense-off in October, resetting the approach for the Lower Tier Air and Missile Defense Sensor, or LTAMDS, program that has struggled to bring about a new radar for well over a decade. The sense-off is “separate and distinct” from contracts awarded to Raytheon and Lockheed Martin last fallto come up with design concepts for a new missile defense radar, according to Bob Kelly, Raytheon's director for integrated air and missile defense in the company's Integrated Defense Systems division, who spoke with reporters Thursday. According to an Oct. 29 notice posted to the Federal Business Opportunities website, the sense-off will take place this spring at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico. Each vendor with a radar will have roughly two weeks on the range to demonstrate capabilities. A down-select will happen by the end of the year. “We can meet the timeline for both the sense off and initial operational capability in fiscal year 2022,” Kelly said. However, it's unclear what this means for the prior technology development program. Kelly said that effort remains relevant, with the contract ongoing, but referred any further questions about its status to the Army. “Our developmental efforts — what we do for one, it serves the other as well,” he said. “We were both [Raytheon and Lockheed Martin] going to develop prototypes. But with the sense-off, we're doing it faster,” and with more competitors. The sense-off strategy accelerates the timeline by a couple of years, Kelly said. The other lingering question is whether the LTAMDS will include 360-degree coverage — a high priority for the Army, but seemingly one downsized in importance for the LTAMDS effort. “The threshold is not for a 360-degree radar,” Kelly said, adding that Raytheon's base design does include the capability. “We have a lot of scalability in our system, so if the Army decides they don't want [360-degree coverage], we can give them the opportunity in the future to upgrade.” The Raytheon-made Patriot air and missile defense radar was first fielded in the 1980s, and the Army attempted to replace the system with Lockheed Martin's Medium Extended Air Defense System through a co-development effort with Germany and Italy. But that program was canceled in the U.S. after closing out a proof-of-concept phase roughly six years ago. Since then, the Army has studied and debated how to replace the Patriot radar with one that has 360-degree detection capability, while Raytheon continues to upgrade its radar to keep pace with current threats. It is acknowledged that there will come a point where that radar will not be able to go up against future threats. “The Patriot remains exceptional” today, Kelly said. “LTAMDS is looking out beyond tomorrow.”

All news