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Ford-class carriers still struggle to hit design targets, says DOT&E

28th January 2022 - 16:30 GMT | by Harry Lye in London

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USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) successfully completed the second of three scheduled explosive events for Full Ship Shock Trials (FSST) on 16 July 2021. (Photo: USN)

The latest annual report from the weapons testing authority in the DoD highlighted new design shortfalls in Ford-class aircraft carriers. The EMALS, arrestor gear, weapons elevators, and dual-band radar are not hitting reliability targets.

The results of a Full-Ship Shock Trial for the USN aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) revealed 'several' design shortfalls, according to the FY2021 annual report from the Director Operational Test & Evaluation (DOT&E) in the DoD.

The report notes that issues arising from the FSST were not previously discovered by modelling and simulation or component-level testing, adding that addressing the shortfalls could improve the Ford-class carriers' survivability against underwater threats.

The DOT&E report said that while shock trial data analysis is still ongoing, the USN had already identified several survivability improvements.

The USN conducted an FSST on USS Gerald R.

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