First Flight III Arleigh Burke DDG to be Built by HII’s Ingalls Shipyard
By RICHARD R. BURGESS, Managing Editor
ARLINGTON, Va. — Ingalls Shipbuilding, a division of Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII), has been selected to build the first Flight III version of the Navy’s Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer (DDG). The Flight III DDG will be the first to feature the new SPY-6 Air and Missile Defense Radar designed by Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems.
The ship, Jack Lucas (DDG 125), will be the 75th Arleigh Burke-class DDG built, and the 35th built by Ingalls Shipbuilding. Ingalls has built 29 ships of the class and has four more under construction. The ship is the fifth of five DDGs ordered in a 2013 multiyear procurement contract, according to a June 27 HII release.
Naval Sea Systems Command awarded a contract modification June 27 to HII for DDG 125, but the contract amount has not yet been announced because of the Navy’s ongoing negotiations on the Flight III ships with General Dynamics’ Bath Iron Works, the other builder of the Arleigh Burke class. The ship will be built with fiscal 2017 funds.
“As this award represents the first DDG 51 Flight III baseline contract award, and the Navy expects to release a competitive solicitation for additional DDG 51 class ships in the Flight III configuration in future years, the contract award amount is considered source selection sensitive information and will not be made public at this time,” the Defense Department contract announcement said.
In addition to the SPY-6 — which will replace the SPY-1 in the ship’s Aegis Combat System — the Flight III will feature upgrades to the electrical power system and to the cooling capacity of the ship.
In its 2018 budget request, the Navy is seeking funds to begin multiyear procurement of 10 Flight III ships. Multiyear procurements typically yield a savings of 10 percent over the time span of the procurement.
“From a ship-design perspective, we’re at 86 percent complete with the design, to introduce Flight III to the DDG 51,” Allison F. Stiller, an official performing the duties of assistant secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition, said June 21 in testimony before the Senate Armed Services seapower subcommittee. “We have a handshake agreement with Ingalls to introduce that engineering change proposal [ECP] on their [fiscal] ’17 ship.”
That handshake agreement is now a formal contract.
“We recently received a proposal from [General Dynamics] Bath Iron Works for their ECP and we’re in negotiations with them. We’ve also received a bid from them on their ‘16 ship, a Flight IIA, and we’re also asking them to give us an ECP to look at that as a Flight III,” Stiller said. “At start of construction with the ‘18 multiyear [the Flight III design] will be 100 percent complete.”
“DDG 125 is the first ship named for Capt. Jack H. Lucas, who, at the age of 14, forged his mother’s signature to join the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves during World War II,” HII said in its contract award announcement. “Lucas, then a private first class in the Marine Corps, turned 17 just five days before the U.S. invasion of Iwo Jima and stowed away on USS Deuel (APA 160) to fight in the campaign.
“During a close firefight with Japanese forces, Lucas saved the lives of three fellow Marines when, after two enemy hand-grenades were thrown into a U.S. trench, he placed himself on one grenade while simultaneously pulling the other under his body. One of the grenades did not explode; the other exploded but only injured Lucas. Lucas is the youngest Marine and the youngest service member in World War II to receive the Medal of Honor.”