Tag Archives: Mark VI patrol boat

Welcome to the (Hopefully) 296-Ship Navy

The president’s fiscal year 2022 budget request has gone live and it includes a modest 2.7 percent pay raise (what is the inflation rate?) and “the largest-ever research, development, test and evaluation request — $112 billion, which is a 5.1% increase over fiscal 2021.”

Notably for the Navy, what isn’t mentioned much is a series of cuts to the fleet, at a time when China, Russia, and Iran are all rattling sabers and hulls are spending record amounts of time underway.

Gone are 7 of the beautiful, but aging Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruisers (with 854 VLS cells), four more almost brand new Littoral Combat Ships, an amphibious warship, the remaining legacy F/A-18C/D Hornets (possibly replaced in the aggressor role with retired USAF/ANG F-16Cs), and a dozen Mark VI patrol boats (the newest of which were delivered in 2015!) for saving $1.2 billion in FY2022 budget proposal.

This comes as the Navy’s proposed $211.7B budget is an increase of $3.8B (1.8%) from the FY 2021 enacted budget received from Congress and just eight new ships (half of them auxiliaries) are requested. On the upside, maintenance for sidelined ships and R&D dollars for the next war, as well as building up Guam as an increasingly vital (albeit easy to target) forward hub, is increased. 

The bottom line:

New rebreather sips Helium compared to older systems

For all of you with a hard hat diving interest, the Navy’s new MK29 Mixed Gas Rebreather system, shown below, was recently developed at the Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division. Designed to conserve increasingly valuable helium, it is undergoing testing at the Naval Experimental Diving Unit (NEDU) in PC.

Also, and completely unrelated, is a video the Navy just released on the Mark VI patrol boats, which are mad sexy from a littoral standpoint