Another reason why the US needs to build some serious new bigassed icebreakers


[QUOTE=c.captain;126876]speaking of LCS STOOPID BULLSHIT…what the FUCK is the supposed to be for?

can someone here tell me how in the hell did Austal USA get so much political muscle? How much money do they use to bribe our lawmakers to get such gifts? FUCKING BULLSHIT!


During the Australian military assistance to secure a newly independent East Timor, the Aussies chartered a wave piercing catamaran ferry from commercial service to transport the Diggers and their equipment back and fourth from Darwin to East Timor. It was re-named HMAS Jervis Bay for the duration of the RAN charter. During that time some officers from a visiting US Navy LHA or LHD were offered an opportunity to con her. Our people were mightily impressed and ever since the gator Navy has pushed and pushed[I] hard [/I]to have ships like those in US Navy service. Several different Australian commercial ferries were chartered over the years for testing, each performing admirably in the estimation of both the Navy and the Army who also tested some (the Army has it’s own gator navy). But to legally buy them outright they had to be built in the US. The only solution was for one of the Aussie manufacturers of these ships, either Austal or Incat, set up shop in the US and build their ships here or to teach an existing US yard how to build them. Austal ended up being the choice. They are great ships, fast and much more economical than hovercraft or hydrofoils for the kind of speed they can generate.

      • Updated - - -

[QUOTE=Bluefin;127077]There’s some talking in Washington now about a new ice breaker - it’s intended to replace one of the Coast Guard ice breakers. - I kinda doubt it will be armed, at least not very heavily.[/QUOTE]

There was an amendment proposed to the 2014 Defense Appropriations bill to require the Navy to fund the construction of four new polar icebreakers for the Coast Guard in the same manner the Navy paid for the USCGC Healy. I cannot find anything about how that turned out other than it was proposed.



Problem solved!


[QUOTE=Rotorhead;127091]Better to buy one of Wartsila’s best icebreaker designs…[/QUOTE]

The shipbuilding arm of Wärtsilä, Wärtsilä Marine, went bankrupt in 1989. Their last icebreaker designs were the Finnish Otso-class and the Soviet/Russian Taymyr-class.


so the Navee recognizes the protecting the nation’s interest in the arctic is part of their mission…

[B]US Navy Releases New Arctic Roadmap

February 27, 2014 By MarEx

The U.S. Navy released an updated Arctic Roadmap on February 24 to prepare naval forces over the next 15 years for operations in the Arctic Ocean.

“This updated Navy Arctic Roadmap prepares the U.S. Navy to respond effectively to future contingencies, delineates the Navy’s Arctic leadership role within the Defense Department, and articulates the Navy’s support to achieve national priorities,” wrote Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert in the Roadmap introduction.

In the coming decades, as multi-year sea ice in the Arctic Ocean recedes, previously unreachable areas may open for maritime use for a few weeks each year. This opening maritime frontier has important national security implications and impact required future Navy capabilities.

“Our goal is to have the Arctic continue to unfold peaceably,” said Vice Adm. Michelle Howard, Deputy CNO for Operations, Plans and Policy. “Working with our maritime and inter-agency partners, and by investing smartly in future capabilities, we can contribute to a secure and stable Arctic region.”

The Arctic Roadmap, updated from its original 2009 version, includes an implementation plan that outlines the Navy’s strategic approach to developing capabilities to operate in the Arctic Ocean, and the ways and means to support the desired Department of Defense and National Strategy end states.

To plan for the changing Arctic environment, Greenert directed the Navy’s Task Force Climate Change (TFCC) to produce an assessment of how ice coverage will change in the Arctic, and its impacts on the Navy.

The task force assembled an interagency team of Arctic experts from various Navy offices, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Ice Center, the U.S. Coast Guard, and academia to develop a consensus assessment based on available predictions by climate scientists. The task force identified key missions the Navy should be expected to perform, such as maritime security (including support to the Coast Guard for search and rescue), sea control, freedom of navigation, and disaster response/defense support of civil authorities.

“As the perennial ice melts and open water is available for longer periods of time, we are committed to expanding our Arctic capabilities,” said Rear Adm. Jonathan White, Oceanographer of the Navy and TFCC director.

Given the vast distances and virtually no supporting infrastructure there, naval forces without specialized equipment and operational experience face substantial impediments. Naval operations in the Arctic Ocean require special training, extreme cold-weather modifications for systems and equipment, and complex logistics support.

The roadmap provides direction to the Navy for the near-term (present-2020), mid-term (2020-2030), and far-term (beyond 2030), placing particular emphasis on near-term actions.

Recognizing the inherent risks and challenges of operating in such a harsh environment, the Arctic Road Map implementation plan emphasizes: increased investment in research and development to better understand long-term climate processes and improve near-term weather predictions; a national effort towards ocean bottom mapping in support of accurate nautical charts; development of requirements for standard aids to navigation in Arctic waters; evaluation of future shore infrastructure requirements; and evaluation of requirements for logistics support capabilities for Arctic operations.

The implementation plan does not alter any current funding or budget processes but reinforces ongoing activities and provides guidance for future year budget deliberations.

“Our challenge over the coming decades is to balance the demands of current requirements with investment in the development of future capabilities,” wrote Greenert. “This roadmap will ensure our investments are informed, focused, and deliberate as the Navy approaches a new maritime frontier.”

so what ships do they have which can operate in that environment? Certainly not a fleet filled with aluminum cans! BUILD SOME BIG BADASSED BREAKERS YOU BONEHEADS!


Be careful wabbit. They could build them but they’ve got no one that has the Ice Knowlege …really. So they’ll be looking for recruits. USN Contracts pay much worse than Big oil. Just sayin.


I do not see why the Navy needs any icebreakers to defend the Arctic. The ice has been doing a pretty good job of defending the Arctic all by itself for centuries.

The Navy has well armed nuclear submarines that routinely patrol the Arctic at incredible speeds and can surface through the ice when necessary. The Navy also has plenty of airplanes and missiles that should have no problem catching up to a slow moving invasion by rouge North Korean or Iranian icebreakers. It might make sense for the Navy to have a few multipurpose surface vessels capable of negotiating light summer ice.

The only role for the Navy in icebreakers should be for their nuclear expertise.


Throwing in yet another modern icebreaker design: (pages 11-12)

The line icebreaker will be the most efficient icebreaker with diesel machinery ever built. Its performance is as good as a nuclear icebreaker, even better in some operations.

The vessel is designed with good ice-going properties both ahead and astern. She is able to proceed at 5 knots speed on 2,1 m thick first year level ice and 8 knots at 4 m thick brash ice with consolidated layer on top.

Also, there’s news about the Canadian polar icebreaker on page 14.


MAN! Reading that just reminds me of how much more advanced European ship design and technology is compared to ours! Hell…most new US built vessels are Euro or at least Asia designs!


this guy’s rubbing it in a bit more … (but he’s got a point)

[B]‘US wants to catch up with Russia in the Arctic’[/B]

March 11, 2014 14:41

The US wants to play a leading role in exploring the Arctic but doesn’t have enough facilities or resources, and basically lags behind Russia, Edward Struzik, leading researcher of the Arctic region, told RT.

“[The Russians] have ice breaker capability, they have naval bases, they are expanding their naval bases. I would say the Russians’ road map to the Arctic is well under way and the US right now is simply acknowledging that they have got to catch up,” Struzik said.

Due to the fast disappearance of seasonal ice, many Arctic countries, particularly the US, have strengthened their involvement in the Arctic region. In February, the US Navy radically updated its 2009 Arctic road map, including various specific tasks and deadlines for Navy offices, including calling for better research on rising sea levels and the ability to predict sea ice thickness, assessment of satellite communications and surveillance needs, and evaluation of existing ports, airfields and hangars.

In November, the US announced it was going to extend its presence in the Arctic, especially taking into account the massive natural resources there vital for America’s development. The Arctic is estimated to have 13 percent of the world’s undiscovered oil reserves and 30 percent of undiscovered gas deposits in the areas covered by an ice cap, which is actually beginning to shrink. In terms of resource shortages, many countries and companies are seeking to become the first to explore and develop new routes and oil and gas fields freed from many thousands of years of ice. Canada, China and Russia have also mobilized their forces, claiming that they’d increase their military presence in the region, develop infrastructure, and explore new shipping lanes for economic, security and environmental reasons.

In this context, the US doesn’t want to remain behind, especially taking into account that the US Navy and Air Forces aren’t numerous there. In fact, the US has only two icebreakers, the Healy and the Polar Star, while Russia has many ice breakers and naval bases. In March, the US Navy will conduct a submarine exercise in the Arctic, and it also plans to participate in a joint training exercise with the Norwegian and Russian military this summer.

Struzik, an author and journalist, argues that the new American road map isn’t really a tool to expand US geopolitical presence in the Arctic region, but it’s an attempt “to catch up because the Russians are far ahead of everybody” and could end up establishing total control over Arctic waters.

“[The US] wants to be a leader as they are in pretty much everything else in the world and they see themselves as a driving force in the future planning of the Arctic. It’s going to be difficult to do right now because they have got only two ice breakers, one is really on its way out, they don’t have any real plans right now to develop a new one. They don’t have a naval base in the Arctic yet, so for them to be leaders they are going to have to do an awful lot to get themselves there,” Struzik said.

Struzik said that Washington could be planning to become some kind of Arctic policeman, though “any kind of combat in the Arctic will be so expensive and such a logistical nightmare,” that the Arctic should rather be “a region of international cooperation.”

“It would drain resources of the country and I don’t see that there is any need because it’s so vast and I think its future is so far ahead that there is plenty of time for Arctic nations to avoid that kind of conflict,” he said.

At the same time, countries are obsessed by their own self-interest and underestimate the looming environmental disaster in the Arctic region provoked by the melting ice cap.

“What’s happening now is that we see resource development comes first and the environmental response is second,” Struzik told RT.


It’s funny how you always need military to explore the Arctic. What a retarded world.


[QUOTE=Tups;132703]It’s funny how you always need military to explore the Arctic. What a retarded world.[/QUOTE]

actually we don’t need any military for exploration or science but we need military for protection of sovereign territory and national interests. USN has the money (if they divert all the stoopid spending in ridiculous ship classes (read LCS here) but USCG has an agreement with them to operate any red hulled ships plus USCG can have guns but I doubt guided missiles or torpedoes unless it’s wartime which it might well end up becoming as long as Vlad the Impaler remains dictator for life of the USSR (sorry Roossia)!


[QUOTE=c.captain;132705]actually we don’t need any military for exploration or science but we need military for protection of sovereign territory and national interests. USN has the money (if they divert all the stoopid spending in ridiculous ship classes (read LCS here) but USCG has an agreement with them to operate any red hulled ships plus USCG can have guns but I doubt guided missiles or torpedoes unless it’s wartime which it might well end up becoming as long as Vlad the Impaler remains dictator for life of the USSR (sorry Roossia)![/QUOTE]

Genius! The Ruskies are already romping around up there so as tensions heat up over Ukraine this is the perfect opportunity to pull a Lloyd Bridges!

[B]President Thomas ‘Tug’ Benson:[/B] Here’s the target area.
[B]Gerou:[/B] That’s Minnesota, sir.
[B]President Thomas ‘Tug’ Benson:[/B] Damn it, man, that’s the genius of my plan. Why go over there to fight? We can do it right here at home, and get in some good fishing while we’re at it.
[B]Gerou:[/B] Sir, the enemy is over there.
[B]President Thomas ‘Tug’ Benson:[/B] Then we’ll fly them over here. Their families too. We’ll teach them to skate… Do I have to think of everything?

We can meet up with the Ruskies in the north pole, bring the Ukrainians and the Crimeans, fly their families in too, we’ll teach them how to skate and we’ll settle the polar exploration AND the Crimean question all in one! Let the games begin and may the odds be ever in your favor!


now we’re about to buy 100 long range bombers at $550M each…sheer genius in DoD spending

[B]U.S. Air Force sticks to $550 million target for new bomber[/B]

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Air Force is “holding tight” to a target of $550 million for each new long-range bomber in a fleet of up to 100 aircraft, excluding research and development costs, an Air Force official said on Tuesday.

“We’re still using that as a pretty firm chalk line for those companies that are bidding on it and in determining which requirements make it, and which ones don’t,” Air Force Undersecretary Eric Fanning told reporters.

He said the cost per aircraft would be higher if research and development costs and inflation were added. He acknowledged that “a number of people” thought the $550 million target was too low to develop the requirements needed for a next-generation bomber.

The Air Force planned to spend nearly $12 billion on the bomber program over the next five years, said spokesman Ed Gulick. He said the $550 million target was calculated in 2010 dollars, assuming a fleet of 100 bombers.

Boeing Co and Lockheed Martin Corp teamed up to compete against Northrop Grumman Corp to develop a successor to Northrop’s B-2 bomber in one of the biggest aircraft development programs being launched by the U.S. military as defense budgets were being cut.

The Air Force expected to formally kick off a competition this year with an eye to fielding the new aircraft in the mid-2020s.

The project was one of the Air Force’s priorities, along with the Lockheed F-35 fighter jet and the KC-46A refueling plane being built by Boeing.

Fanning said the cost target for the bomber would help ensure that the Air Force and the companies involved remained disciplined about the capabilities and equipment proposed for the new aircraft.

He said former Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton Carter had been passionate about limiting the cost of the program, and that the Air Force was “hewing pretty hard to that number.”

of course, “research and development costs” will add at least another $450M to each plane.

we can put Major T. J. “King” Kong in command of the first one to fly!



unless it can fly in space, i think it’s a waste of money.


[QUOTE=mainecheng;133073]unless it can fly in space, i think it’s a waste of money.[/QUOTE]

Amen to that. Why do we need more long range bombers? We already have more of the best and newest long range bombers than the rest the world combined.


The Canadian company Fednav received its Japanese-built icegoing bulk carrier, Nunavik, in January 2014.

Knowing what kind of vessels some other companies operate elsewhere, I wouldn’t be that proud of building “most powerful bulk-carrying icebreaker in the world”. It’s the same as building a sports car that is more powerful than Bugatti Veyron, but just a bit smaller, lighter and slower, and being proud of that…

In the meantime, Mark Collins complains how it’ll take about 14 years for the Canadian Coast Guard to build a polar icebreaker on a Canadian shipyard:

I don’t think the two vessels can be compared to each other, but he does have a point. 14 years is quite a long time.


Now the British are building “one of the biggest, most capable polar research vessels in the world”:

3 knots in 2 metres of ice is not child’s play. I hope the designers, whoever they may be, are up to the task.

On a funny side note, that’s yet another icebreaking vessel that will be designed and built before the Canadian polar icebreaker will be ready.


this released today…the Rooshin lion continues to roar and the US tin whistle is full of spittle

[B]Baltic Shipyard Wins $2.4 Billion Icebreaker Tender[/B]
By Rob Almeida On May 9, 2014

Project 22220 Russian Icebreaker

Baltic Shipyard (Baltiysky Zavod), a member of Russia’s United Shipbuilding Corporation, has won an open tender to construct two additional Project 22220 nuclear icebreakers at a total contract value of 84.4 billion rubles (USD $2.4 billion).

RITM 200 nuclear reactor

These two vessels will be similar in design to the 173-meter Arctic which Baltic Shipyard currently has under construction for Russia.

This giant icebreaker features the new OKBM Afrikantov-designed RITM-200, dual reactor plant that provides up to 50 megawatts of electrical power via three shafts to the vessel to allow it to operate year-round in the arctic. The Arctic was ordered in August 2012 at a total cost of USD 1.2 billion and is scheduled to be delivered in 2017.

Igor Ponomarev, Acting President of the United Shipbuilding Corporation notes these vessels are “essential for the steady development of Russian Arctic projects” and will be targeted for use on Russia’s northern continental shelf to permit commercial navigation on the Northern Sea Route, as well as “to ensure the objectives of strategic security and protection of national interests in the Arctic region.”

In particular, these ships will enable the transportation of hydrocarbons from the Yamal and Gyda peninsulas as well as the Kara Sea.

An overview of the icebreaker design (in Russian)



[QUOTE=c.captain;137307]this released today…the Rooshin lion continues to roar and the US tin whistle is full of spittle[/QUOTE]

Whatever the Russians build, we should build a couple of our own that are bigger and better.


This week, the Russians launched a new 18 MW diesel-electric escort icebreaker (Vladivostok) in Vyborg and laid keel for another one (Novorossiysk). A third of the same series (Murmansk) is under construction in Helsinki, Finland. Furthermore, there’s one 25 MW icebreaker (Viktor Chernomyrdin) under construction in St. Petersburg. The smaller ones are about $135 million apiece while the bigger one is twice that. All four will enter service in 2015.

edit: While I’m happy that the NSF is getting a new icebreaking research vessel this year, this does not sound very promising:

The need for this vessel was first expressed by marine scientists in the U.S. in 1973. After 36 years of development and the consideration of multiple vessel designs, construction began on the ship in December 2009. The vessel was designed by The Glosten Associates, a marine architecture and engineering firm in Seattle, in 2004.

So, five years for designing the vessel and another five for building it. Maybe it really takes ten years to build an icebreaker in the US. On the other hand, that would explain the cost…