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LCS

The first U.S. Navy Littoral Combat Ship, Freedom (LCS 1), the inaugural ship in an entire...

August 13, 2008 The Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) is an entirely new class of warship designed to enable the U.S. Navy to operate in shallow waters for the many close-to-shore challenges it forsees in the coming years. The LCS is very fast, highly manoeuvrable, fully networked and quickly reconfigurable via 24 hour-installable mission modules to enable it to defeat threats such as mines, quiet diesel submarines and fast attack surface craft. There are two variants of the LCS, one a high-speed semi-planing monohull, the other a trimaran, and the first to begin trails is the monohull version from the Lockheed Martin team. Freedom (LCS 1) is currently undergoing “builder trials” on Lake Michigan, testing the ship's propulsion, communications, navigation and mission systems.  Read More

The US Navy's new Littoral Combat Ship, the U.S.S. Independence.

A speedy trimaran with helicopter decks, a stealthy radar profile and a healthy array of arms, the US Navy's newest Littoral Combat Ship is configurable to suit a wide array of combat missions including mine-sweeping, anti-submarine and surface combat support - and it wouldn't look the least bit out of place soaring over the credits of a Star Wars movie.  Read More

RQ-4 Global Hawk - click for larger image

August 10, 2007 Northrop Grumman has announced that it will equip its unmanned aircraft with technology that makes it safer to share airspace with piloted aircraft. Known as “Sense-and-Avoid”, these systems have been in development for more than five years.  Read More

U.S. Navy orders a second Trimaran Littoral Combat Ship

December 21, 2006 The U.S. Navy has approved funding for the construction of a second General Dynamics trimaran version of Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) featuring an innovative, high-speed trimaran hull. The 127-meter surface combatant LCS is intended to operate in coastal areas of the globe, and will be fast, highly manoeuvrable and geared to supporting mine detection/elimination, anti-submarine warfare and anti-surface warfare, particularly against small surface craft. The LCS's large flight deck sits higher above the water than any U.S. Navy surface combatant and will support near-simultaneous operation of two SH-60 helicopters or multiple unmanned vehicles. The ultra-stable trimaran hull allows for flight operations in high sea conditions. In addition, the deck is suitable for landing the much-larger H-53 helicopters, should that become a future requirement. The Littoral Combat Ship will have one of the largest usable payload volumes per ton of ship displacement of any U.S. Navy surface combatant afloat today, providing the flexibility to carry out one mission while a separate mission module is in reserve.  Read More

First Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Launched

September 26, 2006 The LCS is finally in the water, and one of the most anticipated combat ships in history has moved a step closer to deployment. There are two types of LCS (the other is the Austal-designed General Dynamics Trimaran) and the first Lockheed Martin LCS (previous stories here, here and here) was last week christened FREEDOM (LCS-1). The agile 377-foot FREEDOM is the inaugural ship in an entirely new class of U.S. Navy surface warships is designed to help the Navy defeat growing littoral, or close-to-shore, threats and provide access and dominance in coastal water battlespace. Displacing 3,000 metric tons and with a capability of reaching speeds well over 40 knots, FREEDOM will be a fast, maneuverable and networked surface combatant with operational flexibility to execute focused missions, such as mine warfare, anti-submarine warfare, surface warfare and humanitarian relief.  Read More

US Navy orders Trimaran Littoral Combat Ship

The US Navy has announced the award of a construction contract for the Austal designed General Dynamics Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) project. The US $223 million contract for the first of two planned “Flight 0” vessels follows a similar order for the single-hulled Lockheed Martin LCS last December. The two LCS ships will be evaluated and the contracts allow for up to two of each of the two designs to be constructed prior to a decision on how many of each will be ordered, with a fleet of between 50 and 100 LCSs expected to be required over the next 30 years. The General Dynamics LCS is a far different ship to the Lockheed Martin LCS with the secret to its remarkable speed and agility being the aluminium trimaran hull. The LCSs will be the most advanced high speed military craft in the world and are intended to operate in coastal areas globally. As a key part of the US Navy fleet, they will be highly manoeuvrable and configurable to support mine detection / elimination, anti-submarine and surface warfare. The trimaran hull form permits the ship to carry a large capacity of weapons packages with space to land two helicopters.  Read More

Keel laid on First Littoral Combat Ship

June 3, 2005 The keel has been laid on the first Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), marking a significant milestone in production of the U.S. Navy's new class of surface combatant. Named FREEDOM the first LCS will be delivered to the Navy in late 2006. The Littoral Combat Ship is an innovative combatant designed to counter challenging shallow-water threats in coastal regions, specifically mines, diesel submarines and fast surface craft. A fast, agile, and networked surface combatant, LCS will utilise focused-mission packages that deploy manned and unmanned vehicles to execute a variety of missions.  Read More

Click image to enlargeA close-up of the only existing image

January 29, 2005 It's an immense frustration that some of the most significant and advanced engineering feats on the planet are shrouded in secrecy and we can't all wonder at the design solutions employed. Such is the case with many mega-yachts - the US$200+ million toys of the mega-rich - and the spectacular Sigma mega-yacht designed by Phillipe Starck is a case in point. To be constructed by the elite Blohm + Voss ship-building facilities, the only details of the yacht available are the 118 metre length and the accompanying computer-generated illustration.  Read More

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