The U.S. Navy plans to remove the Advanced Gun System (AGS) from its Zumwalt-class destroyers and replace them with four 87-inch tubes for hypersonic missiles. Three Common Hypersonic Glide Bodies (C-HGB) and their boosters could fit in each 87-inch tube – or 12 missiles per Zumwalt, USNI News understands. Richard Scott of Janes.com writes:
The US Navy (USN) still plans to fast-track the integration of the Conventional Prompt Strike (CPS) hypersonic weapon system into its DDG 1000 Zumwalt-class guided missile destroyers, with the aim to complete the first live-fire tests in 2025, according to Vice Admiral Bill Galinis, commander of the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA).
Speaking to reporters after his keynote address at the Surface Navy Association annual symposium held on 12 January in Arlington, Virginia, Vice Adm Galinis said that work on USS Zumwalt (DDG 1000) is on track to start later this year at Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) Ingalls Shipbuilding Division in Pascagoula, Mississippi. The scope of the modernisation and maintenance period will be primarily focused on the removal of Zumwalt’s two 155 mm Advanced Gun System (AGS) mounts and the installation of a CPS-capable Large Missile Vertical Launch System (LMVLS).
The CPS weapon system is intended to deliver a hypersonic conventional offensive strike capability through a depressed boost-glide trajectory to prosecute deep-inland, time-critical, soft and medium-hardened targets in contested environments. Both the CPS weapon system and the US Army’s Long-Range Hypersonic Weapon offensive strike capability will employ a navy-designed common hypersonic missile consisting of a Common Hypersonic Glide Body (CHGB) and a two-stage booster stack.
A new LMVLS installation is required because the Mk 57 vertical launchers fitted to the Zumwalt-class destroyers are sized for Standard Missile-2 and Tomahawk missiles, making them too small to accommodate the CPS weapon system.
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