Navy builds DDG 1000 with next-generation precision gun

The U.S. Navy’s DDG 1000 next-generation land-attack destroyer is being engineered with a stealthy, precision strike Advanced Gun System (AGS) that can pinpoint land-targets with GPS precision at ranges up to 63-nautical miles, service and industry officials said at the Sea Air Space Expo at National Harbor, Md.

The AGS consists of a range of elements. It features a stealthily configured gun with an automated magazine. The 155mm munition called the Long Range Land Attack Projectile (LRLAP) has a propellant charge to send the round toward its targets, said Charlie McCullough, director of business development, Land and Armaments, BAE Systems.

In November 2012, BAE Systems received an $80 million modification contract award to add an AGS for the latest in the Zumwalt-class fleet, the DDG 1002.

The LRLAP has both GPS as well as Inertial Measurement Unit guidance systems and is configured to destroy land-based or “fixed” targets, McCullough said. The LRLAP’s strike range greatly exceeds the range of most Navy destroyers existing 5-inch guns, he added.

The LRLAP has performed well thus far in recent tests, McCullough added.

“We did seven tests in the last month. During the tests, you stress the system in flight regimes and in temperature regimes to make sure that it works and that it fits within all the desired parameters,” McCullough said.

Overall, the DDG 1000 is on track with its current development, said Capt. Jim Downey, program manager, DDG 1000. The Zumwalt-class of guided missile destroyers, the DDG 1000 is engineered with two Vertical Launch Systems for missiles and two AGS as well as X-band radar.

The Navy plans to build at least three DDG 1000s and the first two are already on contract, said Chris Johnson, NAVSEA public affairs.

“We’re expecting delivery of our first ship in 2014 and plan for Initial Operating Capability by 2016,” said Downey.

About the Author

Kris Osborn
Kris Osborn is the managing editor of Scout Warrior.
  • Davis

    AGS on DDG-1000 and lasers on the USS Ponce?! I definitely not complaining but I’m suprised to see in this day in age of budget cuts the Navy seems to be doing really well!

    • Restore Palestine

      You will be crying day and night once you learn that the AGS and laser gun are as effective in real combat as the BS posts on this board.

      • Davis

        Restore Palestine, bro, take some time off from this website, work on your insults and then come back. Your attempts at insulting USS ENTERPRISE, STemplar and myself are so pathetic and childish its embarrassing. Now, I realize you Palestinians are not very smart or good at fighting (as we saw in 1948, 1967 and 1973) but still, if your going to talk trash at least be good at it so you don’t embarrass yourself online.

        • jhm

          What else can they do? Chuck stones at Merkava MBTs? Losers will always moan and groan, why not let him have this one last capability since all their other capabilities have been rolled over or blown away by IAF aces.

        • Moo

          Jesus Christ Davis you Scum-bag, The Israelis got their ass kicked in 2006 by Hezbollah, there is a reason there is a blockade on Gaza…. the reason being if Hamas had access to materials and weaponry they would kick the Zionists out of Palestine just like they got kicked of Lebanon in 2006. I admire the People of Palestine for the tenacity and courage they show in the face of overwhelming force, sling shots against merkava tanks. They have bigger balls than you will ever have son.

      • wpnexp

        Then you would have no problems testing them in say – the Gaza Strip?

      • greg

        LOL your a fool. You just come in here and troll. I don’t know why I or anyone else responds to you.

        I have treat you like my kids and ignore your tantrums.

        Idiot go back to Palestine, they miss you and we hate you.

      • STemplar

        Arabian Gulf.

        • Restore Palestine

          Not interested in your asscrack, STumpler. Go seduce your Arabian master / owner.

        • Restore Palestine

          Still not interested in your asscrack.

          If your Arabian owner isn’t interested, I suggest you go seduce yourself in front of a mirror.

    • Jong

      What happen to the Electromagnetic Railgun?

      • Ben

        It’s coming along. Still not quite mature yet.

    • Bill

      Sometimes a surplus of money can lead to lazy engineering and poor planning – “Oh well, we have the cash to fix this”.

      Engineering, by definition, is supposed to be fiscally practical, so I suppose we are kinda forcing ourselves haha.

  • Noha307

    The battleship is back b*tch!

    • Noha307

      …and for anyone about to go anal on me: Yes, I know it’s not really a battleship.

    • Restore Palestine

      So is your hallucination. Big deal.

    • blight_

      Considering that battleships could get torpedoed (see USS Pennsylvania) and live to tell the tale…well, I doubt that the Zumwalts could take a torpedo and not suffer terribly. However, the Penn may well have sunk if it was under way, and not at port.

      • IronV

        NORTH CAROLINA took a Long Lance torpedo underway and actually sped up for a time. After some debate, naval engineers were satisfied her torpedo protection worked as designed… If PENN ahd been underway, she might have had better watertight integrity. That torpedo strike hit perfectly though… a big mess.

    • usmc-fo

      Ah…not really.

    • brooklyn15

      I’d love to see the battleships back in the fleet, never happen, they’re all museums. I served 3 years aboard the USS WISCONSIN BB64. 55-58.

    • Mike

      US is only investing $80 million..That buys nothing

    • Mike

      All three of them..another hostage to obama economics

    • They don’t use battleships any more

  • Tad

    What’s that smell? Hmm, oh yeah, it smells like exaggeration and prevarication stew, with a side of boondoggle.

    Will be extremely surprised if this gun is accurate over those ranges under realistic conditions. Time will tell,…., if this thing is ever actually used in combat.

    • blight_

      “We used computer simulations to estimate accuracy at long ranges, based on rosy optimistic projections on d_CEP/d_distance. Our model assumes 1″ CEP change per mile, and so when we tested it at one mile, we simply added 63 inches to get a 63″ CEP at 63 miles.”

      /sarcasm

      At the end of the day, the strength of the round is in GPS. Give a GPS-guided round fins and enough glide time to correct for drift, error and wind to arrive at the desired point, then it doesn’t really matter /how/ you deliver it.

  • Mystick

    I wish I knew this was going on… I would have went.

  • ohwilleke

    If it works, it works, which is great. But, how exactly is a weapons system that involves a munition with its own propellant and a GPS guidance system a gun rather than a missile?

    • Duane Schwartz

      Our Marines and Army have been using the 155mm (6.1in) round for many decades. I think this is just a high tech artillary round. Rounds with propellant in them have also been around for a while as well as smart bombs. It was time someone put them all together.
      WTC Ret.

  • DSGB

    You want long-range firepower There has been a system around Since the 1980s
    It’s call Multi launch rock system (MLRS). Put one of those on LCS,DD,CG or LPD Now that’s long-range firepower. You heard it from me first.

    • Rob C

      Too bad the thing too big mount on a ship, specially as small as the LCS. They’ve tried to mount the MLRS on other ships to no availale.

      • wpnexp

        You only need the launch pack and electronics for an MLRS on a ship. Of course, reloading 6 packs would require an ammo handling system, but probalby not as hard as one might think, s the Navy has a long history developing automated reloading systems. Actually, I think MLRS, which is not really an insensitive munition exactly, is probably the drawback that prevents its use with the Navy. But, if used as part of an Arsenal ship, with small crew manning, and in a more expendable mode, could be interesting. Of course, we don’t really think in terms of expendable very much anymore.

    • Dsgb

      I’m a retired gunners mate I worked on the basic point defense (BPD) NATO Sparrow mk-29 And the vertical launch system MK -41. You don’t need to truck you just need to launcher look at the old Spruance class destroyers with the old ASROC Launcher.
      There is even a new smaller version of the MLRS. There isn’t a gun the Navy is producing that has that kind of firepower or range

      • blight_

        As an addendum,an ATACMs at 300 km range is nothing to sneeze at. It’s no TLAM, but…

        • d. kellogg

          The naval version of MLRS was called POLAR (Precision, Over-the-horizon, Land Attack Rocket) and was written off years ago.
          With the advent of quad-packing Sea Sparrow/ESSM types into a Mk41 VLS cell, and the fact that G-MLRS can reach several dozen km with a 90kg warhead, suggest maybe it should be re-visited.
          Add into the equation that it’s been considered to arm the MLRS booster with a Small Diameter Bomb (and its impressive developmental multi-mode seeker/guidance), and long range bombardment capability can be added to dozens of ships, rather than just a handful of Zumwalts.

          POLAR was originally conceived to hit 160km or so.
          Money being no object, it’s even feasible to mount one of those small-scale turbines (akin to the MALD’s TJ150) into the 9inch diamater rocket body and give it some serious range.

  • Belesari

    AGS fires 7ft rounds. These rounds are in reality missiles. This is Not a gun. Whats more its incapable of firing anything but guided rounds meaning it can’t fire on surface contacts.

    There are other guns capable of doing this job and far better such as the MK-71 8in gun.

    The flaws of the AGS are massive so of course the Navy will take it anyways.

    And I would really like to know why so many post keep getting deleted.

    • Warfighter

      Why would it be unable to fire on a surface contact? A GPS coordinate can come from a variety of ISR sources, from EO systems board the ship, drones and spotter aircraft, etc.

      I have no info about this particular project, but I assume they also have an unguided AGS round somewhere so the gun can be fired without the wasted cost of an unused GPS guidance system. Otherwise, BAE would be doing the equivalent of developing the M777 and only building it to fire Excalibur rounds.

      • Belesari

        Good question. The Unguided round was a requirement of the first program. The AGS won partly because it said it could do that.

        There is no unguided round. Its not a 155 mm arty round. It is a missile that is 7 ft long.

        Your analogy is actually perfect thats just what they did.

    • STemplar

      The AGS can fire standard ballistic rounds as well. The original deck gun with no turret was only going to fire unguided, that’s why they put it in a turret, so it could fire standard ammo as well.

      From the product info page at bae.

      Magazine:
      Capacity 600 rounds
      Transfer Fully automated
      Ammo handling Guided or ballistic
      http://events.us.baesystems.com/SAS/prodserv/pdf/

    • narrowgauge

      I work for the yard building the DDG-1000. AGS can fire anything that is 155mm. It also has a rocket aided round for targets further than 100 mi away, sub-munition rounds, and standard 6in rounds.

  • Rob C.

    I was disappointed they could make the AVG to work vertically like they wanted too in the first place. Would have kept the ship stealthier…anyways. I’m glad new guns are working, i just wish they had able make them be able his moving targets. (6.1 inch)155mm gun does alot damage, but its not bunker buster like the 16inch guns were. Zulwalt is still a destroyer regardless of its size, has no armor to speak of. Guy in a bomblatent dingy could blow hole in it. If they were able put into production it would give feel you could deploy them without being paranoid losing unique asset.

  • Tony C.

    The DDG-1000 at a glance has many of the features of the old USS Monitor. It looks like most of it is under water and it doesn’t have much armament. The bridge is composite with kevlar armor, with most of the protection specifics is classified. The survivability of the class is definitely placed on the stealth design. The idea being if it can’t be targeted, it can’t be hit. Problem with this approach is that it can still be seen by the optics of a standard gun sight. I’m curious to see what happens during the sea trials. The hull is wave piercing for better stability and I’ll bet it is a wet ride.

    • blight_

      How durable do you think a DDG or FFG is?

      Of course, you can repair steel with welding equipment. Repairing composites will require glue, carbon fiber patches and vacuum seals to compress the epoxy and eliminate air bubbles.

      Personally, I’m curious if they could use reactive armor against anti-ship missiles. I suppose if missiles are impact-detonated…

      • greg

        I think ASM are too big. 500lb warheads instead of 13lb. Even with the counter force of the reactive explosion the 500lb warhead explosion is going to barrel through and reactive tile.

        So using physics we can say to stop a missile with a 500lb warhead we would need and explosive force equal to that warhead. IMHO a 500lb reactive tile would do as much damage as the missile.

        What do you do for 1000lb Heavy Russian ASM warheads in that case then?

        So long story short impossible.

        A better technology to explore would be the equivalent of a force field. This technology is real and has been tested on a bradley. If you had enough energy to generate a huge electromagnetic field at or right before the time of impact to immediately after, I think that would work.

        That is what I think of when I see startrek anyway.

        • blight_

          The electric armor stuff I remember being mentioned was designed to use the impacting object to complete a circuit and superheat an object to vaporization. It too might have issues stopping especially large objects.

          At the end of the day the thing that’ll save ships is standoff, e.g finding a way to fragment a fast-moving missile with enough standoff between flaming pieces and the hull.

    • give_me_a_break

      At 3 billion per ship, they will never let this thing within 200 miles of any hostile coast line

  • Sev

    Lets test it on the Norks missile launch sites

  • Dick Lancaster

    Impressive, so long as the barrel is long enough so the muzzle blast doesn’t catch this plastic boat on fire.

    • William_C1

      If you’re worried about fire, better a composite superstructure than an aluminum one.

      • Rhys F
  • Andy K

    Thought Zumwalt closed was cancelledafter DDG 1002…did that change? And why not the laser on a DDG instead of a vessel like the Ponce? Will she ever have to shoot in a combat situation? Many questions, are there any answers?

    • d. kellogg

      The laser in question, or any foreseeable future ship-based directed energy weapon, is not suitable for stand off surface bombardment.
      Rather, the DEWs (laser or even electromagnetic/microwave EMP-type weapon) are more akin to the next-gen CIWS, capable of very rapid line-of-sight (visual range)engagement (no gravity droop nor crosswinds to compensate for) and destruction of smaller targets like missiles, aircraft, and small surface craft.
      Very doubtful the USN will ever have such flat-trajectory DEWs arming ships as main armament to the point where we see naval engagements like the space battles out of science fiction.

  • d. kellogg

    On the note of the 155mm naval gun system,
    there IS a lighter version of the AGS suitable for Burke-sized hulls.
    http://www.dtic.mil/ndia/2012armaments/Tuesday14034weyer...

    Of course, for the money spent over the years trying to develop AGS,
    adoption of the 8″ Mk 71 MCLWG all those years ago would’ve given greater leeway over the years in developing a whole range of generationally-improved gun-fired PGMs: think 203mm Copperhead surrogate and develop from there, up thru a 203mm Excalibur type, even shells equipped with a navalized PGK-type smart fuze.
    But for the end cost the USN will still be paying for production-version LRLAPs,
    adopting the POLAR variant of the MLRS would’ve still been still a wiser choice: it could’ve effectively quad-packed (akin to Sea Sparrow and ESSM) into any USN ship equipped with Mk41 VLS cells, thus not requiring a purpose-built hull like the Zumwalt.

  • Austin R. Davis

    what about the navy’s plannes for the new railgun syestem i think that has more promise than this