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Thread: Troubles at the Admirality.

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    Default Troubles at the Admirality.

    From an article I found on a RN link.

    Not just me them that thinks the UK has a problem in building ships with reliable equipment onboard.


    BAE Systems, the prime contractor, ran a competition to select the pair of gas turbines that will power each warship. Excellent bids were received from Rolls Royce plc, offering the WR-21, and from General Electric Company, offering the LM2500. The prime contractor advised us that both engines met the programme requirements, and that either would be acceptable to the Royal Navy. Therefore, it has been a difficult task to decide between the two bids. On balance, we have decided to select the Royce WR-21. The LM2500 is a mature product — it is in volume production and available at an attractive price. We accept that the WR-21 presents a greater degree of risk to the programme, but we had to look at a range of other factors. Those factors, many of which fall outside the type 45 programme, include the commonality of support arrangements with existing Rolls Royce engines in the Royal Navy, and particular aspects of Royal Navy fleetwide operations for which the Rolls Royce engine is well suited.”
    Geoff Hoon, Secretary of State for Defence, House of Commons, 1st November 2000
    Essentially the Labour administration of the time took a calculated risk that untested British GTs would be a better bet than a tried and trusted American option. The British jobs benefits, together with apparent efficiency gains offered by the WR21 made it an attractive political proposition. Although Geoff Hoon is considered to have been something of a blundering Defence Minister, in this instance, it was not an unreasonable decision, especially given the good track record of UK GT innovation. BAES could quite reasonably claim in court that they simply advised the client who took the more risky option. However, BAES has not made any gesture of goodwill and have not funded any rectification work on the Type 45 Destroyers. Meanwhile, they benefit from on-going an in-service support contract for the Type 45 which had already cost the taxpayer 370 million by 2014. Whether Rolls Royce or Northrop Grumman will accept any legal liability seems unlikely and it will be the poor taxpayer will be footing the bill. This unplanned expenditure is also likely to further delay any plans for fitting MK41 Vertical Launch Cells that would allow the Type 45 to carry Tomahawk or SM3 anti-ballistic missiles.

    A reflection on the state of UK industry?
    There are growing signs that frustration with industry in the MoD has reached breaking point. The Type 45 propulsion problems are just one of many expensive problems with major defence contacts. The cost over-runs of the Astute class submarine have led to Whitehall creating a special project office to manage the Trident Successor submarines and failures will be met with harsher financial penalties. The surprise emergence of the alternative frigate programme, in addition to the Type 26, is also a sign of disillusionment with late, expensive and flawed offerings from BAE Systems.
    In a wider sense, the UK defence-industrial malaise is the result of successive governments failure to think strategically and place regular orders that would ensure continuity of employment and the engineering skills base. It is also perhaps a reflection on a society that does not encourage enough young people into science and engineering. Attainment of celebrity careers in media, sport or entertainment are over-valued, far above those of designers, engineers, technicians and scientists upon who we rely for our way of life and military power.
    Last edited by James Curry; 9th October 2022 at 11:42 AM.

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    Default Re: Troubles at the Admirality.

    Interesting.
    GOOGLE USA Navy shipbuilding faults, makes interesting reading.
    The new Zimwalt class of frigate cannot go at full speed because the Hull cracks.

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    Default Re: Troubles at the Admirality.

    And the Russians are having problems keeping theirs afloat.
    Outside of the tank losses, Russia is also estimated by Ukraine’s Armed Forces to have lost: 81 planes, 95 helicopters, 150 pieces of artillery, 64 rocket launchers, three ships, 640 vehicles, 60 fuel tanks, nine drones and 36 anti-aircraft weapons.

    The new Zimwalt class of frigate cannot go at full speed because the Hull cracks. Must be them Swan Hunter welders they contracted in lol.

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    Default Re: Troubles at the Admirality.

    BAE were at one time building ships her in Melbourne.
    But no longer, cost blow outs, saw an end to it all.
    The yard and offices still exist and are manned, no one is sure why!
    Happy daze John in Oz.

    Life is too short to blend in.

    John Strange R737787
    World Traveller

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    Default Re: Troubles at the Admirality.

    Sounds like Oz and UK governments have very similar problems.

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    Default Re: Troubles at the Admirality.

    I was once told that nobody could make a silk purse from a sow's ear. What they also said was that Whitehall can and usually do make a pig's ear out of anything and everything.

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