January 11, 2001

Blue Team unveils its DD21
The Blue Team of
General Dynamics and Lockheed Martin yesterday gave some specifics about its proposed design for the Navy’s DD 21 land attack destroyer.

Blue Team DD21 concepyGeneral Dynamics Bath Iron Works and Lockheed Martin said that their version of DD 21 will contain many key innovations and will lead to the “Navy after next.” Integrated electric drive will enhance survivability and increase design flexibility for all future combatants, dramatically changing how sailors live, work and fight at sea.

The competing Gold Team of Litton Industries and Raytheon apparently does not intend to release details of its design until after the Navy has made its decision on which team to go with

The Blue Team’s proposal, which was submitted to the Navy in December, will be for a ship with a complement of about 95 – a reduction of more than 70 percent compared to current surface combatants. Operations and support costs for the ship will be reduced by 42 percent. This results in a reduction of more than 40 percent in total ownership costs to the Navy and the taxpayer.

General Dynamics and Lockheed Martin said that their multi-mission ship "will attain littoral maritime dominance and bring unprecedented land attack capability to the surface Navy by combining great survivability with unparalleled joint force connectivity. Total ship systems integration supported by a new command and control architecture will achieve performance goals that are both affordable and reliable."

The Blue Team says its DD 21 "also has a dramatically reduced signature with its tumblehome hull and integrated topside design. The ship will defeat any air threat." It adds that "with its reduced acoustic signature and exceptional maneuverability, the Blue Team’s proposed DD 21 can defeat the mine threat – a key to being able to survive, fight and win in the littorals."

The Blue Team DD 21 will be operated by a 15-person watch team working in a highly automated bridge and an advanced Mission Control Center (MCC) using multi-modal work stations and task-managed prompting. The MCC will control the entire ship and replace today’s CIC, Sonar Control, Engineering Control Center, and Damage Control Central. The watch team can concentrate on strategy and tactics, making decisions on accurate and relevant information. DD 21 will employ a four-section watch to provide eight hours of uninterrupted sleep underway

The Blue Team says that a ship’s company of about 95 (without the aviation detachment) can successfully execute all required missions, perform maintenance and cleaning and conduct damage control over a six-month deployment. It says this asserion is based on extensive analysis, modeling and simulation, and has been validated through interviews by Blue Team members with over 700 experienced fleet sailors.
According to the Blue Team, the DD 21 is "the first ship designed for the sailor from the keel up."

Sailors will live in staterooms with a maximum of three people per stateroom with privacy built into the design. Modern recreational and exercise facilities are complemented by an innovative food service. Food service is achieved with a dramatic reduction in personnel. Using advanced technologies and a food service complex designed for efficiency, a seven-person team (instead of the 80 or so on conventional ships) requires no augmentation by temporary personnel.

A ship-to-shore electronic interface provides on-line maintenance, administrative and medical support. It also supports a video teleconferencing capability with family, as well as Internet and on-line education. Significant improvement in work quality through the elimination of work such as paint chipping and mess cooking has been achieved in the Blue Team’s DD 21.

The key to DD 21 survivability is a damage-tolerant design. Examples include zonal distribution and redundancy, which will ensure that power will be maintained, and that the loss of no single space will cripple the ship. In the event of damage, the first response is through the Ship Systems Automation (SSA). SSA provides for extensive internal situational awareness to detect and react to a damage event and begin the recovery process. SSA detects, isolates and contains damage much more effectively than conventional approaches. Automation is augmented by Rapid Response Teams who will have the equipment and skills to handle any event. They will use sensors, wireless communication, wearable computers/mini-cams and personal location devices to gain and maintain total situational awareness, guided by a Readiness Control Officer in the Mission Control Center. DD 21 damage control and recovery concepts presage the future for Navy Damage Control doctrine and tactics.

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