Status of the CG-47 Cruiser and DDG-51 Destroyer Shipbuilding Programs

C-MASAD-83-11: Published: Feb 22, 1983. Publicly Released: Feb 22, 1983.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO evaluated the status of the Navy's CG-47 cruiser and DDG-51 destroyer shipbuilding programs and commented on issues raised in prior GAO reports.

GAO found that: (1) operational testing of the CG-47 Aegis combat system was not adequately completed before it was commissioned; (2) the Navy plans to install SPS-49 radar systems on the CG-47 class against congressional wishes and an earlier GAO recommendation; (3) the CG-47 displacement and center of gravity exceed design goals, which could have an adverse effect on the ship's speed and stability; and (4) the estimated cost of the DDG-51 destroyer has increased to the point where the Chief of Naval Operations has said that it is not affordable and is no longer a cost alternative to the CG-47.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: On January 7, 1985, the Office of the Secretary of Defense Inspector General (IG) follow-up showed that this recommendation had been complied with.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should closely monitor the Navy's February 1983 review of its proposal to modify an existing target to fully test Aegis. If the Secretary is convinced that the proposal will meet testing requirements, approval should be given to start development.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: DOD disagreed in its November 23, 1984, response. DOD reviewed the matter after Congress withheld funding for fiscal years 1983 and 1984. DOD requested Congress to reconsider and Congress approved the SPS-49 radar in CG-47 class ships.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Navy to discontinue the acquisition of SPS-49 radars for future CG-47 ships.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  3. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: DOD agreed in its November 23 1984, response. It stated that the Navy has a vigorous in-house and a contractor-incentivized weight reduction program.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Navy to determine, before adding lower priority systems to the CG-47, that the incremental improvement to mission capability offsets the detrimental effects the increased weight will have on the ship's speed and stability.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  4. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: DOD agreed and stated that the Navy has initiated a program to control costs and set targets for ships to cost. The Navy has established a resource control board to create cost awareness on design options. DSARC met on December 15, 1983, and on January 1, 1984, the Secretary of Defense authorized the Navy to proceed with design and construction of the lead ship of the DDG-51 cl

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Navy to reduce the cost of the DDG-51, as the Chief of Naval Operations has requested, to make the Navy's anti-air requirements affordable. Alternatively, if DDG-51 cost targets cannot be met or if significant reductions in combat capability are necessary to reduce costs, the Navy should consider buying an appropriate number of additional CG-47's. This issue should be resolved at the March 1983 meeting of the Defense Systems Acquisition Review Counsel (DSARC).

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

 

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