Some of you might be interested in responding to this. It also seems to suggest the future USCGC Argus is pretty far along.
Maybe something similar was done earlier, but it seems late in the game to do this sort of design review. Even so, seems like a good idea. Maybe not too late to incorporate ideas in the “B class” OPCs.
As you all probably know by now, I don’t think any current or planned cutter meets the implicit requirement of being able to forcibly stop any ship, regardless of size, and my belief this is entirely possible for cutters as small as patrol boats (WPBs).
R 241556Z AUG 22 MID200080150110U
FM COMDT COGARD WASHINGTON DC
SUBJ: SOLICITATION FOR SUBJECT MATTER EXPERTS (SME) TO ASSESS
THE OFFSHORE PATROL CUTTER
1. This ALCOAST solicits volunteers to participate in a six-day
Offshore Patrol Cutter (OPC) Operational Assessment (OA) in Panama
City, FL from 31 October to 05 November 2022. The OA is a review
and analysis of cutter design data to determine the operational
capability and effectiveness expected to be delivered by an OPC.
2. Background: The OPC will constitute a significant percentage of
the USCG’s major cutter fleet, and is designed to have new
capabilities for maritime homeland security, law enforcement and
national defense missions. OPCs, designated as the Maritime
Security Cutter, Medium (WMSM), will replace existing Medium
Endurance Cutters (WMECs) and fill a critical operational gap
between the USCG’s Fast Response Cutter (FRC) and the National
Security Cutter (NSC). The first OPC will be delivered in FY 2023.
3. The OA, facilitated by the Operational Test and Evaluation Force
(OPTEVFOR), is primarily a tabletop documentation review by
experienced active duty members who are currently serving, or have
recently served on WMECs, WHECs, WSMLs, or have experience with
planned OPC systems and major cutter support. The OA will also
provide SMEs an opportunity to walk an OPC currently in production
to supplement their assessment of capabilities. SME input will
assist OPTEVFOR in assessing suitability of systems on an OPC and
will culminate in an OA report submitted to the Vice Commandant and
DHS’ Office of Test and Evaluation to assess OPC capabilities.
4. Following are the OPC assessment groups and the corresponding SME
experience needed for the OA:
a. DECK – Current or recent major cutter First Lieutenant (BOSN).
Boatswain’s Mate with current or recent major cutter experience as
Deck Leading Chief Petty Officer. Enlisted ratings with current or
recent major cutter experience as coxswain, boarding officer, boat
deck operator/supervisor/safety, flight deck crew, and underway
b. ENGINEERING – Current or recent major cutter Engineer Officer,
Main Propulsion Assistant, and Damage Control Assistant. Senior
enlisted with current or recent experience as Engineering Leading
Chief Petty Officer. Machinery Technicians, Electrician’s Mates,
Electronics Technicians, and Damage Controlmen with current or
recent major cutter experience.
c. OPERATIONS – Current or recent major cutter Commanding
Officer, Executive Officer, Operations Officer, and Electronic
Materials Officer. Boatswain’s Mates with current or recent major
cutter experience with navigation duties and visual signaling.
Operations Specialists with current or recent major cutter
experience with Sea Commander and electronic warfare systems.
Electronics Technicians with current or recent major cutter
experience with electronics systems maintenance. Information
Systems Technician with current or recent major cutter experience.
Intelligence Specialist with recent major cutter intelligence
d. SUPPORT – Current or recent major cutter Support Officer.
Storekeeper, Yeoman, Culinary Specialist, and Health Services
Technician with current or recent major cutter experience. Port
Engineer, Asset Manager, Availability Project Manager, and Logistics
Specialist with current or recent experience in supporting major
e. WEAPONS – Current or recent major cutter Weapons Officer, and
Tactical Action Officer or Combat Systems Officer. Electronics
Technicians with current or recent major cutter experience as Mk 48
GWS operators/maintainers. Gunner’s Mates with current or recent
major cutter experience maintaining and operating Mk 110, Mk 38, and
small arms maintenance.
f. AVIATION – Current or recent major cutter Helicopter Control
Officer and Landing Signals Officer. Helicopter pilots with current
or recent shipboard deployments as Senior Aviator or HITRON pilot.
Enlisted aviation ratings with current or recent experience in major
cutter deployments with responsibilities for aircraft maintenance.
5. Volunteers must be available for the entire six-day event and be
free of normal duties to allow focus on this Operational Assessment.
Participants can anticipate travel on 30 October and 06 November.
SMEs will be provided read-ahead documents in preparation for their
role to ensure the OA is completed within the allotted time. A
detailed schedule of events will be provided via email after
participants have been identified.
6. Interested participants should contact the OPC Sponsor’s
Representative, LT Sam Williams, by 19 September 2022 via email,
noting relevant experience and desired mission area from paragraph
7. Members must include a copy of their employee summary sheet from
CGBI in-board view as an attachment. Email must be forwarded from
your unit CO or XO to demonstrate command approval for
participation. COMDT (CG-9322) will issue travel orders to members
selected to participate.
8. Point of contact: LT Sam Williams, COMDT (CG-751), 202-372-2324,
9. RADM Todd C Wiemers, Assistant Commandant for Capability (CG-7),
10. Internet release is authorized.
This does seem late in the game but could be interesting feedback. I’m more interested in the GAO review of ESG’s protest to the Austal USA contract award. Hopefully the protest will be resolved by then so that Austal can send some folks to sit in.
GIven we never see this kind of request, let’s chalk it up as a potential win. What a rewarding opportunity.
This is a normal, expected, required part of a Major Systems Acquisition, and nothing out of the ordinary. WMSLs had this, WPCs had this, hell, 110s had this 35 years ago.
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