Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Sub Questions for Balance of Obama Term

Background

23 May 2012 - USS Miami (SSN-755) was severly damaged due to arson at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine.  
The Navy Department debated on whether to scrap the ship. Both US Senators from Maine—where the shipyard is located—advocated repairing her. The United States Navy asked Congress to add $220 million to the operations and maintenance budget for emergent and unfunded ship repairs which would be used to help repair the Miami. The final [sic] outcome was a choice to repair the submarine at an estimated total cost of $450 million, the USS Miami was expected to return to service sometime in 2015. However, congressional inaction to fully resolve the United States fiscal cliff had put this in doubt. 

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11 June 2012Molten Eagle Predicted:
The total probability of the possibilities discussed above (Scrap- 52%, MTS- 2%, Repair- 21%, and Accommodate women- 25%) is estimated to be 100%. Time will tell us.  
(Note:  6 August 2013 entry - ME's highest probability prediction outcome has been confirmed: SSN-755 to be scrapped.).


5 Sep 2012 - The Navy has said it will fix the submarine by April 30, 2015, because the Miami still has 10 years remaining in its roughly 30-year service life, making it eligible for at least five more deployments. - Navy expected to award EB two major contracts for USS Miami repairs, The New London Day, Jennifer McDermott.

6 Aug 2013Navy discovers more damage, decides to scrap submarine Miami  The New London Day, Jennifer McDermott.

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Questions (for Balance of Obama Term):

Note: Time alone (through the end of Obama's final term) will reveal the answers

1 ) - The accurate probability analysis predicting the scrapping USS Miami included a possibility of converting the sub to accomodate women crew.  Now that Miami is to be scrapped, another SSN sub would have to undergo such alterations to accomodate women crew in order to fulfill SecNav Mabu's promise to have women on SSNs next year (by 2014).  Will Mabus go "low-budget" (blaming ongoing sequestration limitations) to squeeze females in as one of the guys?  That would certainly be among good guesses.

2 ) - Though not obvious, it is clear SecNav Mabus had pushed for refurbishing USS Miami. Obviously, the choice to repair Miami not only had Mabus's support, put it was being pushed in the final hours of the scrapping decision.  How do we kow this? ANSWER: A key admiral has been quoted promising 10 (not 5) five full-length deployments for the Miami's remaining post-repair, 10-year life expectancy.   

3) - Repair cost estimates increased as predicted from $450 million to $700 million from unexpected hull cracking.  Wrong!  It had been expected by submarine metallurgists ever since the fire. In fact, the reason the admiral in 2) increased the promise to 10 deployments was to hold the average cost of deplotment without payroll and operating costs to an average of $70 million. This was a political maneuver.  Who was behind it? ANSWER: SecNav Mabus would clearly be suspected among the best possible answers. 

4) -   Will PNS receive major submarine work in the future without a submariner in command of the shipyard ?  

Submarines are always silent and strange.

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