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"Future Navy Innovation Rests On Refitting 20-Year-Old" Topic

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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP15 Sep 2020 10:23 p.m. PST

… "Gen Z" Ships

"As the nation recovers from a COVID-19 induced economic depression, the U.S. Navy will face severe resource constraints for a decade or more. In such a challenging environment, the value in "Generation Z" platforms—20 year-old ships that have been bought and paid for—risks being ignored. Rather than refit the "Gen Z" fleet, the U.S. Navy, under pressure from the Department of Defense, is eying another, rather more risky route to save money by trying to sell a skeptical U.S. Congress on the value of unmanned craft and keeping the conventional shipbuilding industrial base alive.

While removing personnel from the maritime battlefield and maintaining America's shipbuilding industrial base are all worthy endeavors, the Pentagon's focus on ambitious technological leaps may create more problems. A more incremental approach, using older, albeit updated ships to field advanced sensors and fix existing—and knotty—integration problems will be an enormous help in advancing unmanned innovation, reducing both risk and vulnerability…"
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Thresher01 Supporting Member of TMP17 Sep 2020 2:00 a.m. PST

"Unmanned" naval vessels sound great in theory, and might be okay for very small, expendable, attack craft, or recon vehicles. Maybe even for mine clearance too.

However, who fixes the "unmanned" vessels when they break down, have sensor issues, weapons jams, or take damage?

If you don't have damage control parties and techs on board and anything happens, "it's game over man, GAME OVER"!

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