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Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Contains threads on Royal Navy equipment of the past, present and future.

What will be the result of the 'Lighter Frigate' programme?

Programme cancelled, RN down to 14 escorts
51
11%
Programme cancelled & replaced with GP T26
13
3%
A number of heavy OPVs spun as "frigates"
118
26%
An LCS-like modular ship
20
4%
A modernised Type 23
21
5%
A Type 26-lite
65
14%
Less than 5 hulls
21
5%
5 hulls
63
14%
More than 5 hulls
88
19%
 
Total votes: 460

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Poiuytrewq
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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Poiuytrewq » 03 Apr 2019, 00:02

Lord Jim wrote:Which platform is CL planning to use to bid for the T-31e?
Leander?
https://www.leanderfrigate.com

Scimitar54
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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Scimitar54 » 03 Apr 2019, 00:38

All power to their elbow. Who knows, they may eventually regain the competence to build SSKs as well. Sorry, possibly a bit of a crossover for this topic!

Pongoglo
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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Pongoglo » 05 Apr 2019, 18:48

Looks like Babcock are serious about putting TACTICOS into the RN version of Arrowhead as well as the export boats ? Their building a new support center in Plymouth too;

https://www.plymouthherald.co.uk/news/l ... rt-2683577

The image shows Leander however !

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Aethulwulf » 06 Apr 2019, 21:16

Its clear that Team 31 are strongly pushing Tacticos for Arrowhead 140 not just because Thales want to sell more of their combat system, but they also think Tacticos is better than the CMS being offered by the two rival bids and could give them the winning edge.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Jake1992 » 06 Apr 2019, 21:27

Aethulwulf wrote:Its clear that Team 31 are strongly pushing Tacticos for Arrowhead 140 not just because Thales want to sell more of their combat system, but they also think Tacticos is better than the CMS being offered by the two rival bids and could give them the winning edge.


What happens is Arrowhead 140 is chosen but the RN want BEA CMS-1, can they make a stipulation of the win and force Team T31 to incorporate it. Would Team T31 walk away ?

Aethulwulf
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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Aethulwulf » 06 Apr 2019, 21:34

Jake1992 wrote:
Aethulwulf wrote:Its clear that Team 31 are strongly pushing Tacticos for Arrowhead 140 not just because Thales want to sell more of their combat system, but they also think Tacticos is better than the CMS being offered by the two rival bids and could give them the winning edge.


What happens is Arrowhead 140 is chosen but the RN want BEA CMS-1, can they make a stipulation of the win and force Team T31 to incorporate it. Would Team T31 walk away ?
Will not happen. RN does not 'want' CMS-1.

If it did, it would have mandated it as a requirement. It didn't.

The three bids will be subject to hard analysis to determine how they meet a range of combat requirements. The combat management system, and how well it performs, will be part of this analysis.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Jake1992 » 06 Apr 2019, 21:46

Aethulwulf wrote:
Jake1992 wrote:
Aethulwulf wrote:Its clear that Team 31 are strongly pushing Tacticos for Arrowhead 140 not just because Thales want to sell more of their combat system, but they also think Tacticos is better than the CMS being offered by the two rival bids and could give them the winning edge.


What happens is Arrowhead 140 is chosen but the RN want BEA CMS-1, can they make a stipulation of the win and force Team T31 to incorporate it. Would Team T31 walk away ?
Will not happen. RN does not 'want' CMS-1.

If it did, it would have mandated it as a requirement. It didn't.

The three bids will be subject to hard analysis to determine how they meet a range of combat requirements. The combat management system, and how well it performs, will be part of this analysis.


So the RN have spent years setting in place to have CMS-1 accrosd the whole fleet from OPV to carriers yet now decide they don’t want it ?

I just find that very odd to be honest, the whole idea of CMS-1 was to have one system that could be easily upgraded for the task but keep training and maintenance down to just one line.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 06 Apr 2019, 22:01

In the T31RFI, introduction cost of anything new to RN (new training, new logistics) was to be evaluated. If my memory works, 1 year support including all the training was also included. At least they are included in the 1.25B GBP,

Long term maintenance cost was not included, though, so RN must pay for it.

Aethulwulf
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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Aethulwulf » 06 Apr 2019, 22:11

What the RN wants is the best T31 frigate it can get within its budget. That means leaving the choice of the combat management system (and associated costs) down to the bidders.

The cost of any new training system must be included within the bid. So there is no penalty to the RN to a non-CMS1 solution from the training perspective.

What the RN did have was a whole number of different combat management systems across its ships, all managed by BAE. Whenever an update was required (say for example a new NATO standard for IFF), it would have to task and pay BAE multiple times to make the same update across the different systems. As far as I'm aware BAE have never sold any of their combat management systems to any overseas navy (apart from when a 2nd hand RN ship has been sold).

Thales with their Tacticos system are proactive in providing 6 monthly updates to all their customers. The cost of this is spread out across the large customer base. So again, there is little penalty to the RN to a non-CMS1 solution from the maintenance perspective.

That leaves it down to which is the better system from a performance perspective. This is the real question.

People appear to be backing CMS-1 because, as it is in use across RN ships, they assume it must have a lower purchase and support cost to the RN.

But the other two rival systems are in use across many ships and many countries. The purchase and support cost to the RN for these system could easily be similar or even lower than CMS-1.

The issue of performance appears to have often been forgotten. But it is the key. Which system provides the best performance, while meeting the budget.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 06 Apr 2019, 23:01

Aethulwulf wrote:That means leaving the choice of the combat management system (and associated costs) down to the bidders.


It also means that weapons integration does not cost extra and any risk in it is carried by the bidder.

Jake1992
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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Jake1992 » 06 Apr 2019, 23:03

To me I don’t understand why the RN would want to introduce an new CMS, no matter what way you cut it a new CMS would require extra training and no matter how larger the customer base it would require a new maintance line with all the cost that this creates.

I can’t see why the RN wouldn’t say in the end we like design B but we want this CMS so make it it work.

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Halidon
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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Halidon » 07 Apr 2019, 01:08

Jake1992 wrote:To me I don’t understand why the RN would want to introduce an new CMS, no matter what way you cut it a new CMS would require extra training and no matter how larger the customer base it would require a new maintance line with all the cost that this creates.

I can’t see why the RN wouldn’t say in the end we like design B but we want this CMS so make it it work.

Going to make a somewhat shocking statement here and say that having a "single" CMS fleet-wide does not prevent rather serious training and supply headaches. Look no further than Aegis.

Meanwhile, interoperability with NATO/other allied navies that use Tacticos is nothing to sneeze at. Particularly for 31e, which is envisioned to be an export darling.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 07 Apr 2019, 01:55

Jake1992 wrote:To me I don’t understand why the RN would want to introduce an new CMS, no matter what way you cut it a new CMS would require extra training and no matter how larger the customer base it would require a new maintance line with all the cost that this creates.

I can’t see why the RN wouldn’t say in the end we like design B but we want this CMS so make it it work.
The point is, the timing of "in the end" was passed a year ago, when the competitive design phase (CDP) has started. Final decision has already been done.

If MOD want to revert it, I understand it needs to come back to re-issuing the CDP. Of course, this means at least 1 year delay in the program. Furthermore, as this will force the team structure of Babcock-team and Atlas-UK team to be reformed (= need to define the interface, responsibility, cost-allocation and risk-allocation) between the BAE CMS-1 team, it will take another few months to go. Of course, all the money payed for current CDP will not come back, and yet another budget will be needed for the new CDP contract. (but it is a few 10M GBP, I guess? Not deadly large, because it is before the main-gate contract).

Overall, it will shift back the program by at least 1.5 years for sure.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 07 Apr 2019, 06:44

Halidon wrote:nothing to sneeze at. Particularly for 31e, which is envisioned to be an export darling
and in our use, the 'singleton' to be sent to various ad hoc naval task forces
- here's how the EU Op Atalanta has been stitched together for situational awareness https://on-shore.mschoa.org/mschoa-and- ... eness-how/
- the inter-TF boxes have not even been elaborated

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RichardIC
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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby RichardIC » 09 Apr 2019, 06:31

Mr Paul Sweeney: [240633] To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether the outturn budget for the Type 31e
programme is maintained at £1.25 billion for five ships.
Stuart Andrew:
As announced in the National Shipbuilding Strategy, we want five ships at an average price of £250 million per ship. In common with all procurement projects the overall Type 31e programme cost will be determined at the main investment decision point.


It’s subtle, but this from yesterday’s Hansard is possibly slightly less absolutist on the question of price. We’ll now be a the stage where potential bidders are talking detailed specs and brass tacks with MoD. And whatever answers they give to one bidder they need to share with the others to keep competition fair.

Paul Sweeney is an ex-BAE shipbuilder and member of Defence Select Committee.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Poiuytrewq » 09 Apr 2019, 08:21

Possibly a chink of light at the end of the tunnel?

Hopefully sense will prevail in the end

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Ron5 » 09 Apr 2019, 16:59

RichardIC wrote:And whatever answers they give to one bidder they need to share with the others to keep competition fair.


No they don't. In fact, they shouldn't.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby RichardIC » 09 Apr 2019, 19:37

Ron5 wrote:No they don't. In fact, they shouldn't.


I'm not a corporate lawyer and complex warships aren't covered by ECJ rules. But I'd have thought that if you refine the process or provide a clarification to one bidder without providing the same consideration to others you'd be lining yourself up for a legal challenge.

But quite honestly I'm not that bothered. I was commenting on the general language around final contracted price.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Ron5 » 09 Apr 2019, 20:16

If Bae/CL ask "may we remove, refurbish, re-warrant CMS, Artisan and CAMM from the T23's at our expense? and then re-install on the Type 31?" and the MoD says yes, why should that be revealed to Babcocks?

If Babcocks asks "may we built the T31 blocks in low cost Romania before shipping to Rosyth for fit out?" and the MoD says yes, why should that be revealed to Bae/CL?

I could think of a hundred and more questions that deserve confidential answers.

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RichardIC
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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby RichardIC » 09 Apr 2019, 22:21

Ron5 wrote:If Bae/CL ask "may we remove, refurbish, re-warrant CMS, Artisan and CAMM from the T23's at our expense? and then re-install on the Type 31?" and the MoD says yes, why should that be revealed to Babcocks?

If Babcocks asks "may we built the T31 blocks in low cost Romania before shipping to Rosyth for fit out?" and the MoD says yes, why should that be revealed to Bae/CL?

I could think of a hundred and more questions that deserve confidential answers.


And you're not a corporate lawyer either.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 10 Apr 2019, 06:57

RichardIC wrote: possibly slightly less absolutist on the question of price. We’ll now be a the stage where potential bidders are talking detailed specs

Competitive design contracts have only been awarded to those who credibly hit the bare-minimum RFI "design"
- and they are what it says on the tin: competitive and, unusually, the commercial negotiations are running in parallel
- the question how you keep a 'level playing field' in that kind of set up is bound to be complicated. For starters, everyone must have been given a list of available Gvmnt provided kit, and the charge per item for any that will be included in the design. A good way to incentivise maximal reuse, while not putting shackles on performance improvement (if and when it is not cost prohibitive)

Obscure, all in all, to us outsiders. But there is nothing in the way of indicating the process is run in some sort of "wrong way". Were that to be the case, the 'radio silence' will make it sure that we will be the last to find out; accountability would come under extreme scrutiny in any such 'post mortem' though.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Caribbean » 10 Apr 2019, 07:56

RichardIC wrote:It’s subtle, but this from yesterday’s Hansard is possibly slightly less absolutist on the question of price.

To be fair, right from the start, their have been hints that more money might be available if industry could show good reason why they couldn't meet the price point. I've always seen the £250m as a "challenge price" to see what can realistically be achieved.
The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.
Winston Churchill

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby dmereifield » 10 Apr 2019, 08:14

Caribbean wrote:
RichardIC wrote:It’s subtle, but this from yesterday’s Hansard is possibly slightly less absolutist on the question of price.

To be fair, right from the start, their have been hints that more money might be available if industry could show good reason why they couldn't meet the price point. I've always seen the £250m as a "challenge price" to see what can realistically be achieved.


I'm sure he bidders will be presenting a range of options when they present their bids: for £250 million you get T31 of spec X, if you want spec Y it will cost £xxx million, spec Z will cost £xxx

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Lord Jim » 10 Apr 2019, 11:36

I must admit I am surprised and confused a little by this set up where the MoD sell kit to he bidders from ships being decommissioned and then buys back the same equipment as part of the cost of the platforms delivered! Surely this increases the cost of the platform as the bidder will want to get more for the kit than they paid for it. Surely it would have made sense to say to all bidders, "Here is a list of equipment we will provide if you wish to use it". Of course this is caveated with the understanding that the overall cost of each platform does not include and costs for this equipment except installation but that would be for the MoD "Bran Counters" to scrutinise when it comes to accessing the individual bids.

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Re: Type 31 General Purpose Frigate [News Only]

Postby Scimitar54 » 10 Apr 2019, 12:29

Each (hopeful) Ship Builder would have to choose between buying & supplying new kit, or the cost of buying & refurbishing ex. RN kit. Surely you are not suggesting that the RN would have refurbished the kit removed from the T23s, when they did not know whether or not it would be used.

The cost of any Refurbishment required properly lies with the Ship Builder, even if the RN does act as it's sub-contractor for refurbishment.


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