JHSV program takes a hit in Budget shipbuilding request

JHSV_aftThe JHSV (Joint High Speed Vessel) program takes a hit under the FY 2013 Budget proposal sent to Congress by the White House today. At one time, the Navy was planning to acquire 23 of the vessels. Today, though, a Defense Department budget document says '"The Navy will truncate the Joint High Speed Vessel program after buying 10 ships, sufficient to meet its core requirement."

According to the PEO Ships website:

The JHSV Program is currently executing the Detail Design and Construction contract, awarded on November 13, 2008 to Austal, USA, with options for nine more ships under fixed price incentive contracts.

Initially, the JHSV program was envisioned to have the five of the first 10 JHSVs assigned to the Army and five to the Navy. However, at the Army/Navy Warfighter Talks in December 2010, both Services agreed to transfer the Army's five JHSVs to the Navy. The agreement will reduce the Total Ownership Costs by reducing redundancy in crewing, training, and maintenance under a single service.

Navy exercised options for JHSV 2 and JHSV 3 on January 28, 2010, JHSV 4 and JHSV 5 on October 12, 2010, and JHSV 6 and JHSV 7 on June 30, 2011. Start of construction of JHSV 2 began on September 13, 2010, and start of construction of JHSV 3 began on September 2, 2011. Christening of JHSV 1 was held on September 17, 2011.

Meantime, the Navy has just gotten what are to all intents and purposes two JHSV's with its acquisition of the two for Hawaii Superferries.

Overall, the budget documentation says, the Shipbuilding Portfolio for FY 2013 includes the funding for 10 new ships:

2 Virginia Class nuclear attack submarines;
2 DDG-51 Flight IIA destroyers;
4 Littoral Combat Ship (LCS);
1 Joint High Speed Vessel (JHSV); along with the construction funding for
1 carrier, the USS John F. Kennedy, the second FORD class nuclear powered aircraft carrier.

February 13, 2012

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