Thursday, March 14, 2013

EMCON, What's That?

AOL just published an article reporting on a talk by CNO Greenert at a Newseum conference.  Among the comments was this gem:

“Greenert also hit one of his favorite topics, electronic warfare, saying ‘we’ve gotten really sloppy’ since the Soviet threat went away.  By adding new sensors and communications gear without concern for EMCON, emissions control, he said, ‘we are out there spewing electromagnetic energy into the air,’ which makes Navy ships much easier for enemies to find.”
Really??!  We’ve been installing new equipment without concern for EMCON requirements?  This has only been an issue and a requirement since WWII.  Who has allowed this to happen?  Where has Navy leadership been all this time?  Do you people see why I’m so critical of the Navy’s leadership? 

This is yet another example of Navy leadership’s focus on all the wrong things.  This is why the LCS was built without galvanic corrosion protection, something we’ve thoroughly understood since the 1800’s.  This is why we’re building ships with no armor protection and placing single, unarmored gun mounts on Burkes.  This is why our ASW capability has atrophied.  This is why we have no credible mine countermeasure capability.  This is why we’ve gone back to building ships out of aluminum despite having seen the catastrophic consequences of doing so.

Even more than being yet another sign of the total failure of Navy leadership to execute their responsibilities, this is a perfect example of the consequence of the Navy decision to abolish their in-house design and engineering groups, the General Board and BuShips.  The Navy no longer has in-house engineering and naval architecture expertise.  I’ll do a dedicated post on that topic in the very near future.


  1. Been out for a few years but EMCON has been a problem for a while.

    You would think that there would be a control box in Combat which would put the electronics into the proper EMCON setup but no, you would have to send people to the various electronic spaces to change EMCON conditions. And in a world where you might only have seconds to respond to an incoming threat, you might not have time to get personnel get to the space and then go through the proper procedures to shut it down or start it up.

    1. ....that doesn't even make sense. A box to put ALL equipment into settings you know nothing about. Nah, bro there's a reason for that. Leave the personnel to shut off what they need to. Don't mess with their equipment

  2. Presumably, the EMALS catapult launch system aboard the new Ford Class aircraft carrier is properly shielded to control its electromagnetic signature -- or so we would hope, anyway.

    1. Well, that's a great point I hadn't thought about! EMALS uses a series of, presumably, very powerful motors. Surely, the Navy wouldn't forget to address that?! I mean, that would be like forgeting to apply galvanic corrosion protection to a new ship. Oh wait, they did forget that.

      Houston, we probably have a problem!


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