Navy Secretary Ray Mabus has offered updates on the littoral combat ship program and other efforts to build up the service branch’s fleet size.
Mabus told Defense News senior naval reporter Christopher P. Cavas in an interview published Sunday how the military branch worked to address capability, cost and schedule issues with the LCS program, which he says provides “capabilities that no other ship does.”
He noted that three aircraft carriers and two amphibious ships are in the construction phase and that the Navy has started to procure 10 destroyers and 10 submarines over a period of five years in an effort to address the declining number of ships.
“You better have an eye on 15 years down the road because if that secretary of the Navy in 2021 who is bragging on the fact that he or she grew the fleet isn’t doing the same thing then whoever the secretary in 2031 is going to be in rough shape and is going to get pounded for it,” Mabus said.
He told the publication that the service branch has begun to move forward with the amphibious ship program, LXR, as a replacement for the landing ship dock.
Mabus also discussed the Navy’s aircraft acquisition, efforts to protect research and development funds, personnel initiatives and biofuel adoption.