The US Navy has conducted a demonstration to assess the possibility of using digital tools to get real-time feedback for the frigate bridge design and operation.

Announced by the US Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA), the demonstration took place during the bridge validation event at the Mariner Skills Training Center Pacific in San Diego, California, US earlier in February.

It primarily aimed to support the future Constellation-class guided missile frigates (FFG) programme. Currently, Fincantieri Marinette Marine is building the first three FFG vessels that are scheduled for delivery in 2026.

Participants for the event were FFG principals from the US Navy, NAVSEA engineering directorate, programme offices as well as other industry partners.

Officials from in-service surface ship classes such as Zumwalt-class guided missile destroyers, Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, Freedom-class littoral combat ships (LCS) and San Antonio-class amphibious transport docks took part in the event.

For this demonstration, FFG programme office participants constructed a live, virtual bridge environment by reusing design artifacts

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It provided initial view of FFG 62 general pilot house arrangements along with a demo of how crews will respond to those arrangements under different situations.

US Navy frigate programme product support and readiness director Jonas Brown said: “This event was a showcase that demonstrates how we connect detail design and production artifacts together with manpower, training and sustainment concepts to create a digital engineering capability that modernises Navy shipbuilding processes.”

The Navy is planning to expand digital tools availability by adding design, production, test as well as logistics support information.

It will eventually pave the way for handling the management tasks related with lifecycle data and virtual model for the frigates’ entire service life.