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NEWS | Dec. 7, 2017

NAVSEA Commonality Team's findings could save millions in fleet maintenance costs

By Matt Leonard, NSWCPD Public Affairs

PHILADELPHIA - The Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) Commonality Lead Support Activity (CLSA) at the Naval Surface Warfare Center Philadelphia Division (NSWCPD) recently completed a deep dive analysis on Electrical Composite Enclosures.

Implementing the recommendations of this analysis will reduce ships' force maintenance burden, as well as the total ownership cost of ships across the fleet. The analysis demonstrates how the Commonality Team is supporting the NAVSEA priority to promote a culture of affordability.

Shipboard electrical enclosures, such as those used for power junction and communication devices, are constantly exposed to the sea's harsh environment. Over time, the exposure results in significant maintenance effort and cost to the Navy. Because of this, the Commonality Team identified enclosures as an opportune project for deep dive analysis.

The team compared the metallic enclosures used throughout the fleet, against enclosures made of a plastic composite. The analysis found that use of the composite material will not only prevent corrosion of the enclosures themselves, but also the resulting corrosion that forms on hull areas adjacent to the enclosures.

The analysis addressed both recurring and non-recurring costs, and provided calculations of total ownership cost for both metallic and composite enclosures. The Commonality Team's calculations demonstrate that full implementation of composite enclosures across the fleet has the potential to save the Navy over $76 million in recurring maintenance and sparing costs over a 30-year period.


NAVSEA's initiative for Commonality began in 2007 and NSWCPD has been involved with this effort since the beginning.

"We've been honing our skills in the area of Commonality for many years with our participation in various deep dives, as well as the development of the Virtual Shelf," said Ezio Treglia, NSWCPD's Commonality team lead.

The Virtual Shelf is a searchable database of items; parts and specifications. NSWCPD developed the Virtual Shelf as a resource for shipyards, ship design managers, In-Service Engineering Agents, and other stakeholders to aid in identifying equipment and components that are qualified for cross-platform use. The tool will aid in the effort to increase the use of common components across the fleet and reduce total ownership costs.   

The Commonality Team is also involved in Virtual Shelf reviews that keep it current and relevant.  The reviews involve analyzing part and specification data to ensure that items determined to be obsolete or redundant have been removed and to confirm the overall database accuracy. The team conducts reviews either annually or biennially as determined by the Technical Warrant Holder with responsibility over the specific area. Since 2015, the team has completed reviews on 82 technical part and specification Virtual Shelf review categories, involving more than 21,000 individual part changes.


In 2016, NSWCPD was established as the CLSA for NAVSEA through a formal Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The CLSA's purpose is to lead the effort to reduce the number of unique systems, subsystems, and components introduced into the fleet inventory for new ship construction, major modernization, and planned maintenance.  This directly supports a culture of affordability.

The MOU outlines 22 Enterprise Commonality responsibilities for the CLSA. The initiatives include collectively managing the infrastructure of the Commonality Virtual Shelf repository; conducting TWH-approved specification and part variation reduction deep dives; and further refining the Commonality tools that can reduce total ownership cost across the fleet.

The CLSA also has a role in Commonality education and training. To this end, the team has developed a Commonality awareness computer-based training module. This training is accessible in the Navy's Total Workforce Management System, Course Title: NAVSEA

Commonality Training, Course ID: TWMS-626680.

In fiscal 2018, the Commonality Team expects to launch Virtual Shelf 3.0. This update will increase the capabilities of the data search function, and introduce enhancements to the user interface.

NSWCPD provides the Navy's primary technical expertise for naval machinery research and development and in-service engineering, as well as machinery cybersecurity and lifecycle engineering.

                                                                                 - NAVSEA -