The USA’s DDG-51 Arleigh Burke Class destroyers are the core of the modern US Navy, with 51 ships of class afloat and serving, and 63 ships total contemplated. They are built by General Dynamics’ Bath Iron Works, and Northrop Grumman Corporation’s Ingalls shipyard. Now Gannett’s Navy Times reports that 13 of these destroyers have suffered “significant” structural damage in rough seas from ‘bow slams’ on the hulls. A US Navy Power Point presentation obtained by the publication allegedly confirms the Jane’s report, and adds that repairs and design changes could cost almost $63 million. Support beams and other structures inside the destroyers will reportedly need to be cut out and replaced, even in new ships.
Repairs have already taken place to the USS Gridley [DDG 101] a latest-version Flight IIA destroyer built by General Dynamics’ Bath Iron Works and commissioned in February 2007. Other damaged ships, including their designation number, version, and builder (General Dynamics or Northrop Grumman), reportedly include:
USS Arleigh Burke [DDG 51], FLT I. GD. First of class.
France’s Rafale is part of a set of European 4+ generation fighters that were developed and fielded during the 1990s-early 21st century, with the aim of surpassing both existing offerings among America’s “teen series” fighters, and Russia’s Mig-29 Fulcrum and SU-27/30 Flanker family. The French had originally discussed a consortium with Britain & Germany, but France’s insistence on carrier capabilities and accompanying weight limits, and their non-negotiable demand that it be in charge of any fighter project and allocate work sharing, created a competitor in the Eurofighter and forced Dassault to go it alone.
Morocco’s air force currently flies 2 squadrons of old F-5s, and 2 squadrons of slightly newer Mirage F1s. Their neighbor and rival Algeria flies MiG-23s of similar vintage, but adds far more modern and capable MiG-29s. The Force Aérienne Algérienne also flies SU-24 Fencer and SU-25 Frogfoot strike aircraft, and is set to receive 36 multi-role MiG-29SMTs and 30 multi-role SU-30MKs as part of a multi-billion dollar weapons deal with Russia. Morocco is looking for replacement aircraft that will prevent a complete overmatch, and initial reports pegged them as the Rafale’s first export customer. That competition has become a dogfight, however, and recent reports of a used F-16 buy mean the Rafale risks repeating an all-too familiar scenario. In part, says one report, because of French government screw-ups…
Facchina Construction Co., Inc. in La Plata, MD received a $27 million firm-fixed-price contract for construction of aircraft taxiways and parking aprons for the Green Side and White Side Aircraft Complex at the Marine Corps Air Facility in Quantico, Va. The work consisting of, but is not limited to, construction of concrete aircraft taxiways and parking aprons, bonded refueling truck parking area, demolition of existing airfield pavement, taxiway lighting and incidental work.
Work will be performed in Marine Corps Air Facility, Quantico, VA and is expected to be complete by August 2009. This contract was competed utilizing full and open competition via the Naval Facilities Engineering Command E-Solicitation website, with 1 offer received by the Naval Facilities Engineering Command in Washington, DC (N40080-08-C-0002).