The Navy is considering adding an advanced degaussing system to all destroyers in 2023, according to Capt. Seth Miller, program manager for the Arleigh Burke class.
The Fiscal Year 2022 National Defense Authorization Act requires the Navy to incorporate an advanced degaussing system, which helps cancel out the ship’s magnetic field, into the next multiyear procurement contract for Flight III Arleigh Burke-class destroyers.
“There's actually a configuration decision being looked at on the 2023 multiyear right now. The Navy's coming through that decision,” Miller said at the Surface Navy Association’s National Symposium on Jan. 12.
“Understand the NDAA cuts in at 2025, so depending on how that 2023 decision comes out, that'll drive . . . what the cut in point is, but it’s either 2023 or 2025 at this point, depending on how the appropriation [bill] and everything works out,” Miller said.
Currently, the Navy has seven Flight III destroyers under construction at its shipyards -- Huntington Ingalls Industries and Bath Iron Works, Miller said.
The shipyards remain “on track” and the first Flight III ship will be delivered in April 2023, he said.
The program is waiting for a decision regarding the shipbuilding profile but is preparing for a FY-23 to FY-27 multiyear contract, Miller said.
“The program is still planning on a two-a-year production rate,” he said. “And then, as far as the transition, the Navy is looking closely at that as far as making a smooth transition with industry to get to that DDG(X) as we continue the conversation.”
Congress added three destroyers to its final version of the FY-22 NDAA, despite the Navy only requesting one destroyer in its original budget.