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I’m Off!

October 7, 2009

I’ll be visiting Orlando Florida until Sunday. Have a great rest of your week and I left a few posts to tied you over. Thanks as always for stopping by!

11 Comments leave one →
  1. Scott B. permalink
    October 9, 2009 6:13 pm

    More LCS-2 news :

    October 9, 2009 : MORE ON THE LCS FLOODING

    Apparently the accident happened when Austal transferred fuel from tanks forward to tanks aft. The resulting change of trim allowed river water into the jet drive room.

    (source : Tim Colton)

  2. Scott B. permalink
    October 8, 2009 5:03 pm

    Below are some comments I posted over at Information Dissemination back in March 2009 on the subject on cavitation erosion damage on both LCS designs :

    Galrahn said : “can we at least get an update by someone what a Flight 0+ Lockheed Martin LCS is? What are the changes?”

    1) Don’t expect much changes on LCS-3 for most of the materials (e.g. steel HSLA and lower-grade) and equipments (radars, gun, gas turbines, diesel engines, powerjets,…) have already been ordered and/or delivered.

    2) If more than 2 ever get built (which I hope won’t happen), expect the latter copies to try and eliminate some of the major flaws that exist in the current design. E.g. for the propulsion :

    a) Current waterjets (Kamewa Model 153 SII & BII) replaced with one of the advanced waterjet designs funded by ONR in order to reduce (eliminate ?) the severe cavitation erosion damage predicted on all four waterjets.

    Rolls Royce has just been awarded a $5.7M contract for the Compact High-Power High-Density Waterjet :

    b) Reduce / eliminate the current large transom overhand that hampers waterborne removal of all four waterjets, meaning that these must be replaced in dry dock.

    c) Allow waterjet bearings to be lubricated from inside the vessel rather than outside the vessel as is currently the case.

    Scott B. | 03.24.09 – 10:40 am |

    Bill said : “??. All the KaMeWa jets that I have ever worked with have a dedicated low-pressure lube-oil circulation system supporting the impeller bearings..with the pump and reservoir inside the vessel.”

    On LCS-1, oil lubricated thrust and radial bearings located inside waterjet hub, but outside the vessel.

    On LCS-2, oil lubricated thrust bearings are located inside the vessel, but radial bearing are located inside the waterjet hub, i.e. outside the vessel.

    Scott B. | 03.24.09 – 11:33 am |

    Bill said : “I would also note that I have not seen cavitation erosion problems with the KaMeWa units either”

    1) On LCS-1, all four waterjets (inboard : KAMEWA 153 SII stearable, outborad : KAMEWA 153 BII non steerable) are predicted to have significant erosion damage.

    2) On LCS-2, inboard watejets (WARTSILA LJ 160) are predicted to have significant erosion damage as well.

    This is, I believe, one of the main reasons why the LJ 160 are supposed to be replaced by the WLD 1720 on LCS-4, and WLD 1720 being backfitted to LCS-2.

    3) As far as I can tell, cavitation erosion issues have been documented for both LCS-1 and LCS-2 at least as far back as mid 2006, for instance in various briefs prepared by Ron Crockett and Jeff Schumann (both NAVSEA 05Z11).

    Scott B. | 03.24.09 – 11:51 am |

    Some quotes from a brief prepared by Jeff Schumann (NAVSEA 05Z11) back in December 2005 :

    * Displacement of the LCS Flight 0 ships is above that used for waterjet design purposes

    * Result is that cavitation on the waterjet impellers will be severe

    * Waterjet impellers will require frequent repair

    * Estimate of waterjet impeller repair frequency is as high as 1 per year

    Scott B. | 03.24.09 – 11:59 am |

    1) There are four waterjets that would suffer cavitation damage on LCS-1.

    2) Estimate of waterjet impeller repair frequency because of cavitation damage is as high as 1 per year.

    3) Waterjet impeller repair cost $100K per waterjet (spare impeller cost about $300K).

    Assume a service life of 30 years, this means a cost of $12 million, which doesn’t include the cost of dry-docking the vessel and the labor needed to perform the physical change-out of the water cartridge.

    Scott B. | 03.24.09 – 1:51 pm |

  3. Scott B. permalink
    October 8, 2009 4:55 pm

    Mike Burleson said : “Scott, keep the links coming! I’m gonna fit this in my schedule somehow.”

    OK, another one from Navy Times (October 7, 2009) :

    LCS trials may resume next week, sources say

    With this little gem :

    “But it’s not necessarily ‘the engine’ from our evaluation that’s preventing us from doing it, it’s a number of issues. It’s some cavitation issues. It’s some vibration issues, some temperature issues on different components.”

  4. October 8, 2009 2:54 pm

    Scott, keep the links coming! I’m gonna fit this in my schedule somehow.

  5. Scott B. permalink
    October 8, 2009 11:05 am

    More LCS action :


    October 7, 2009 : House-Senate Committee Agreement Reached On Fiscal Year 2010 Defense Authorization Bill

    Summary Tables

    LCS Sea Frame Cost :

    FY2010 Budget Request : $1,380 million for 3 ships

    i.e. $460 million per unit

    Conference Outcome : $1,380 million for 2 ships

    i.e. $690 million per unit

    Other Highlights :

    * Approves the Navy’s plan to change the acquisition strategy for the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) program, by conducting a winner-take-all down select for two ships in FY2010, with fixed-price options for two ships per year for the next four years thereafter.

    * Requires that DOD treat the LCS as a Major Defense Acquisition Program (MDAP).

  6. Scott B. permalink
    October 8, 2009 7:57 am

    Scott B. said : “Mike, have you considered starting a weekly LCS chronicle ? Cuz I’m telling ya’, there’ll be quite a lot of action on the LCS front pretty soon !!!”

    Action !

    October 6, 2009 : LCS-2 acceptance trials moved to mid-November from original August date

    “MOBILE, Ala. — General Dynamics said Monday that it hopes to have the littoral combat ship Independence ready for mid-November acceptance trials, about three months behind a schedule that once had the Austal-built vessel scheduled for delivery in September.”

    (source :

    October 7, 2009 : LCS 2 FLOODED

    “Three separate sources have now told me that Austal accidentally left some valves open and flooded a shaft alley and/or a steering gear space on LCS 2 on Monday. Not good. Depending on the extent of the damage, trials could be further delayed.”

    (source : Tim Colton)

  7. October 7, 2009 5:24 pm


    Yeah, probably worse than when I was only 15 and a neighbor shot a round just past my right ear.

    Correction – the Durance class standard armament is that single 40 mm, six .50 cal. MGs, and a single Simbad Mistral twin missile launcher. However, La Somme is a command ship and is armed differently. She carries that single 40 mm, plus two 20 mm, only two .50 cal. MGs, and three Simbad Mistral twin SAM launchers. Pictures of Durance class ships also show smaller 7.62 mm MGs mounted around ships’ superstructures. I now imagine multiple streams of fire of about four different calibers.

  8. William permalink
    October 7, 2009 4:58 pm


    Very frightening.

  9. October 7, 2009 4:17 pm


    La Somme is fitted with a single 40 mm Bofors cannon along with six .50 caliber heavy machine-guns and a short-range SAM mount. That 40 mm cannon is mounted forward of the bridge.

    La Somme chased down one of those two skiffs that attacked it. Imagine being in an open skiff being chased by an 18,000 ton command & supply ship while its cannon is discouraging your terrified flight with shells screaming overhead and exploding ahead in the path of your escape.

  10. William permalink
    October 7, 2009 3:05 pm

    How do you say “Oops” in Somali?

  11. October 7, 2009 2:58 pm


    Well, you’re traveling while there’s news. The French Navy just caught some Keystone Krooks overnight. This is from The Christian Science Monitor.

    Top 5 blunders of Somali pirates

    Somali pirates attacked a French Navy ship by accident Tuesday night. Five suspects are in custody.

    Lately, those once fearsome Somali pirates have been behaving more like Keystone Krooks than savvy organized criminals.

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