Arsenal ship

Arsenal ship

An arsenal ship is a concept for a floating missile platform intended to have as many as five hundred vertical launch bays for mid-sized missiles, most likely cruise missiles. Such a ship would initially be controlled remotely by an Aegis Cruiser, although plans include control by AWACS aircraft such as the E-2 Hawkeye and E-3 Sentry.

History

Proposed by the US Navy in 1996, it has since had funding problems, with the United States Congress cancelling some funding, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) providing some funding to individual contractors for prototypes. Some concept artwork of the Arsenal Ship was produced, some images bearing the number "72," possibly hinting at an intent to classify the arsenal ships as a battleship (the last battleship awarded (but never built) was USS|Louisiana|BB-71).

The U.S. Navy has since modified three of the four oldest "Ohio"-class Trident submarines to SSGN configuration, allowing them to carry up to 154 Tomahawk cruise missiles using vertical launching systems installed in tubes which previously held strategic ballistic missiles. Modification of the fourth sub is underway as of 2007.

Design

Such a ship would be likely be low-profile, stealthy, and double-hulled (i.e. with several hull layers), to provide it a high degree of survivability. The strategy would thus be to move the ship into a theater as fast as possible, combined with either airborne (such as AWACS) or seaborne (such as a "Ticonderoga"-class cruiser) "remote control and guidance". This provides an enormous amount of force projection and would put minimal personnel in danger. The benefits of this are many, but perhaps the most significant is the possible obviation of the need for the standard carrier battle group and associated costs. The Tomahawk suggested for the design has a range in excess of one thousand kilometers.

The estimated cost of these ships is on the order of $500 Million each, with another roughly $500 Million cost for the armaments, which would include Tomahawk and other cruise missiles.

ee also

* Kirov class battlecruiser

External links

* [http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/ship/arsenal_ship.htm FAS page on Arsenal Ships]
* [http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/ship/docs/rsnlship.htm Dawn H. Driesbach's paper on arsenal ships]
* [http://www.warship-21.com/pages/936010/index.htm TRAMCO Striker page]

References

* Holzer, Robert. "Commanders May Share Arsenal Ship Assets." Defense News, (17 June - 23 June 1996)" 10.

* Holzer, Robert with Pat Cooper. "Warships May Use Leaner Crews: Report Recommends Additional Firepower for U.S. Navy Vessels." Defense News, (29 January - 4 February 1996): 4.

* Holzer, Robert. "U.S. Navy Eyes Options as Arsenal Ship Takes Shape." Defense News, (5 February - 11 February 1996): 20.

* Holzer, Robert. "U.S. Navy's New Arsenal Ship Takes shape." Defense News, (8 April - 14 April 1996): 4.

* Lok, Joris Janssen. "Arsenal Ship Will Pilot Future USN Combatants." Janes Defense Weekly, 17 April 1996: 3.

* Metcalf, Joseph III. "Revolutions at Sea." U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings, 114, no. 1019 (January 1988): 34-39.

* Pickell, Greg. "Arsenal Ship fails to Hit the Mark," Defense News, (16 October 1995 - 22 October 1995): 55.

* Scott, Richard, ed. "Arsenal Ship Programme Launched." Jane's Navy International, 101, no. 7 (1 September 1996): 5.

* Smith, Edward A. "Naval Firepower for the 21st Century." The Washington Post, 27 July 1996.

* Stearman, William L. "The Navy Proposes Arsenal Ship." The Retired Officer Magazine, 102, no. 11 (November 1996): 39.

* Stearman, William L. "A Misguided Missile Ship: Old Battleships Would Do a Better Job Than a Pricey New Boat," The Washington Post, (7 July 1996): C03.

* Stearman, William L. "The American Scud." Navy News & Undersea Technology, 12, no. 41 (23 October 1995).

* Truver, Scott C. "Floating Arsenal to be 21st Century Battleship." International Defense Review, 29, no. 7 (1 July 1996): 44.

* U.S. Department of Defense. Arsenal Ship...21st Century Battleship. Brief prepared by OPNAV (N86). Washington, D.C.: 23 May 1996.

* U.S. Department of Defense. Arsenal Ship Program. Joint memorandum signed by Larry Lynn, John W. Douglass and J.M. Boorda. Washington, D.C.: 18 March 1996.

* U.S. Department of Defense. Promulgation of The Arsenal Ship Concept of Operations. Memorandum for Distribution by Daniel J. Murphy. Washington, D.C.: 11 April 1996.

* U.S. Department of Defense. The Arsenal Ship. Brief prepared by OPNAV (N86). Washington, D.C.: 29 August 1996.


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