• The Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine USS Louisiana transits the Hood Canal as it returns to its homeport following a strategic deterrent patrol


    Location, Location, Location: Evaluating Risks to Submarines from Low-Yield Warhead and Submarine Missile Launch Detection

    Experts can argue that a low-yield SLBM might not be worth deploying as it would put U.S. submarines at unacceptable risk. But the costs to adversaries to develop the capability to target U.S. submarines with nuclear weapons are substantial. In contrast, the costs to the United States are low, requiring only modification to an existing warhead.

    Mar 12, 2018

  • The Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine USS Rhode Island (SSBN 740) returns to Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay after three months at sea


    Discrimination Details Matter: Clarifying an Argument About Low-Yield Nuclear Warheads

    Nuclear forces and nuclear strategy are complex and the facts surrounding them are often shrouded in classification. But if the United States were to deploy a low-yield submarine-launched ballistic missile warhead in the future, an adversary would face the same problems as it does today in knowing what the missile contains

    Feb 16, 2018

  • Sailors aboard the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70)


    Future Aircraft Carrier Options

    As the U.S. Navy's legacy aircraft carrier force begins reaching expected service life, what are the possible alternatives to potentially replace it? And what are the potential implications for procurement cost and effectiveness?

    Oct 6, 2017

  • Report

    A Strategic Assessment of the Future of U.S. Navy Ship Maintenance: Challenges and Opportunities

    This report assesses possible supply and demand capabilities in the ship maintenance workload for the U.S. Navy and notes long-term challenges facing mitigation efforts.

    Sep 18, 2017

  • A Chinese naval ship departs after a visit in Davao city, southern Philippines, May 2, 2017


    Enhancing China's Status as a Great Power

    China is investing heavily in its military modernization program as it aims to extend its power in the region as well as globally. How will China's growing ability to project power affect U.S. regional goals?

    Aug 1, 2017

  • Dissertation

    Search and Rescue in the Arctic: Is the U.S. Prepared?

    Explores the U.S. capability to handle the Arctic Search and Rescue (SAR) Agreement, a landmark treaty that gives the U.S. responsibility for conducting SAR in a slice of territory that surrounds Alaska and stretches to the North Pole.

    Jun 19, 2017

  • Expeditionary Unit (MEU) depart the well deck of the amphibious assault ship, USS Makin Island, in a combat rubber raiding craft during Tiger Strike 2016


    Amphibious Operations in Contested Environments

    Amphibious forces can be useful in a variety of settings. But the reach and lethality of today's weapons make parts of amphibious operations especially challenging.

    May 18, 2017

  • An electrician mechanic rewinds a stator at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility


    Current and Future Challenges to Resourcing U.S. Navy Public Shipyards

    To better understand recent trends at U.S. Navy public shipyards, RAND researchers explore how shipyard work is changing, whether more personnel are now required to perform it, and what risks shipyards may wish to address through additional hiring.

    May 2, 2017

  • NATO Response Force and Allied Marines from the U.K., U.S., Sweden, and Finland simulate amphibious assaults on a Swedish beachhead during BALTOPS 2015


    The Hidden Potential of NATO's Gator Navies

    Improving U.S.-European amphibious interoperability would bolster the alliance's defense posture in a non-provocative manner that complements recent moves in land forces. The 2017 Summit in Brussels presents an opportunity to refine allied ground posture while adding this maritime dimension.

    Mar 17, 2017

  • Philippine Coast Guard's Special Operations Group secures mock pirates during a rescue drill exercise with Japan's Coast Guard off Manila Bay, Philippines, July 13, 2016


    The Era of Coast Guards in the Asia-Pacific Is Upon Us

    Coast guards, not navies, are the new asset of choice in East and Southeast Asia to assert sovereignty over disputed waters. China has been expanding its coast guard fleet and many states, like Vietnam and the Philippines, lack the funds to match it.

    Mar 8, 2017

  • Japan Coast Guard vessel PS206 Houou sails in front of Uotsuri island, one of the disputed islands, called Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, in the East China Sea, August 18, 2013


    The New 'Normal' in the East China Sea

    China and Japan are engaged in a long-term test of wills over disputed waters and territory in the East China Sea. The Japanese government has acknowledged the challenge it faces and has begun to invest in infrastructure and personnel projects to address it.

    Feb 27, 2017

  • Taiwanese Coast Guard patrol ship, Kaohsiung (CG 129), during a rescue drill near the coast of Itu Aba in the South China Sea, November 29, 2016


    History and Current Developments Regarding Taiwan's Coast Guard

    As Asia-Pacific countries develop policies to regulate maritime zones of jurisdiction, the importance of coast guards as instruments of state policy has been growing. Taiwan's Coast Guard is an increasingly effective force facilitating the protection and regulation of Taiwanese maritime rights and interests in the East and South China Sea.

    Feb 15, 2017

  • Report

    Smarter Power, Stronger Partners, Volume II: Trends in Force Projection Against Potential Adversaries

    This book describes scenarios to test whether the anti-access and area-denial threat to U.S. force projection is growing more severe. They describe plausible U.S. and adversary military actions given current operational capabilities and approaches.

    Feb 8, 2017

  • A Korea Coast Guard ship


    South Korea Cracks Down on Illegal Chinese Fishing, with Violent Results

    In the Yellow Sea and elsewhere, Chinese fishermen have shown an increasing willingness to challenge attempts by coast guards to enforce fishing laws. Earlier this week, after repeated warnings, the Korea Coast Guard opened fire on a Chinese vessel fishing illegally in Korean waters.

    Nov 4, 2016

  • Sailors and members of the Applied Physics Laboratory Ice Station clear ice from the hatch of the Seawolf-class submarine USS Connecticut in the Arctic Ocean, March 19, 2011


    How to Be Safer in the Arctic

    The Arctic is more accessible than it once was, but it's still a formidable place to travel. An emergency involving a cruise ship or a downed plane could stress the search-and-rescue system. But modest investments and planning measures can make a big difference.

    Oct 3, 2016

  • A Chinese Coast Guard vessel is pictured on the disputed Second Thomas Shoal, part of the Spratly Islands, in the South China Sea, March 29, 2014


    The Crucial South China Sea Ruling No One Is Talking About

    The PCA found in July that China's coast guard had breached several UNCLOS articles governing safety and navigation at sea. Hopefully, this will help build a legal case that abiding by basic maritime safety principles is in the interest of all countries, including China.

    Sep 16, 2016

  • The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower approaches the Friendship Bridge as it transits the Suez Canal, July 8, 2016


    Egypt's Suez Canal: An Attenuated Lifeline

    The U.S. Navy has enjoyed the luxury of being able to transit the Suez Canal without hindrance for decades. However, the risk of losing access — perhaps quickly and unexpectedly — should inform Navy strategic and operational planning.

    Sep 14, 2016

  • Report

    Maritime Tactical Command and Control Analysis of Alternatives

    This report is about software systems that support situational awareness and command and control (C2) for the U.S. Navy. This report provides the results of an analysis of alternatives for the follow-on to the Global C2 system maritime (GCCS-M).

    Aug 29, 2016

  • Ukrainian and U.S. Sailors aboard of the guided-missile cruiser USS Vella Gulf (CG 72) work together on the forecastle of the ship as it departs Sevastopol Jan 30, 2012.


    The Growing Importance of Black Sea Security

    The U.S. and NATO response to Russia's more assertive policy in Europe since 2014 has focused heavily on deterring possible Russian threats to the Baltic region. As allies take steps to strengthen defense of the Baltic region, they need to pay increased attention to enhancing security and deterrence in the Black Sea area.

    Jul 11, 2016

  • People's Liberation Army naval soldiers stand on a military vessel at a naval base in Hong Kong, July 1, 2016


    Book Review: 'China's Military Transformation,' by You Ji

    China's military has undeniably made tremendous strides in recent years. You Ji's book provides a collection of interesting and often perceptive observations on political and intellectual aspects of a rapidly modernizing People's Liberation Army.

    Jul 5, 2016