Why Has The Navy Upped Its Shipbuilding Plan?
In our new age of warfare, there is special attention being paid to cyber defenses, robotic capabilities, and battlefields that are found in a digital realm. However, there is still room for improvement and expansion on more traditional fronts, including land, air, and of course, sea. The Navy is a unique branch of our military, requiring a range of specialized weaponry and transport capabilities that must be kept current.
Updating A Vital Fleet
The U.S. Navy has a big task ahead of it in replacing an aging fleet of ships and submarines. A previous goal of constructing 306 new vessels, which will consistently replace regular submarine retirement through 2027, has now been upped to 308. Just how do those 308 amphibious forces break out in terms of specific ships and why has the Navy slightly boosted its goal despite funding concerns?
Increased Strategic Capabilities On The Seas
The new goal has reportedly been adjusted due to the need for increased strategic vessels, which will hopefully help naval forces evolve to meet real-world defensive changes. However, if funding sources needed for this major overhaul are not secured or face sequestration pitfalls, the shipbuilding rates would need to be reduced. Some fear that would render our navel battle forces inadequate, which could easily become a reality if the Budget Control Act (BCA) is not rescinded.
What Are The New Vessels?
The newly updated 308 ship plan breaks out to a diverse series of vessels, including 12 fleet ballistic missile submarines, 11 aircraft carriers and 48 attack subs—all nuclear powered—88 large multi-mission surface combatants, 52 small multi-role surface combatants, 34 amphibious warfare ships, 29 combat logistics force ships and 34 support vessels. The two added vessels are a twelfth LPD 17-class amphibious transport dock and a third Afloat Forward Staging Base.
It’s projected that these vessels will give the U.S. Navy essential strategic and modernized capabilities, which will become increasingly important as conflicts change and evolve across the globe. Do you think this current approach will be adequate and give us the naval advantages for which U.S. forces are aiming? Tell us your thoughts in the comments.