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  • U.S. Destroyer, Combat Systems Head For Rough Waters
    Posted by Michael Fabey 10:22 PM on Dec 21, 2011

    We’re closing the year here at Aviation Week with the end of our year-long examination of the U.S. Navy’s destroyer programs, called “Come About.”

    We found a lot of evidence suggesting that as much as it doesn’t want to, the Navy will probably have to upend $121.8 billion worth of development plans for its destroyer fleet, Aegis combat systems and the proposed Air and Missile Defense Radar.

    My series details the Navy’s miscues in building its destroyer fleet and developing an accompanying shipboard combat system to perform ballistic missile defense. The net effect of these missteps could well solidify the grip of incumbent contractors on Aegis … even when the admirals say they want very much to break these kinds of monopolies.

    I did scores of interviews with Navy and contractor program officials, defense analysts, subject matter experts, Navy and Pentagon leaders, testing officials and a host of others associated directly or indirectly with the programs. We also captured, analyzed and vetted millions of computer records to provide a clearer picture of the funding trends and expectations for these programs.

    This effort was capped off last week with the five-part Come About series, published exclusively on the Aviation Week Intelligence Network (AWIN). Subscribers to AWIN can find links to the entire "Come About" series, as well as supporting data tables, graphics and links to pertinent sources, by clicking here.

    If you're not an AWIN subscriber, you can still check out my summary story here, on

    Tags: ar99, aegis, DDG-1000, DDG-51, USNavy

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