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Littoral Combat Ship (LCS)

Austal's Independence variant Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), developed for the US Navy, is a high-speed, agile, multi-mission combatant that delivers superior seakeeping and performance. The Independence variant LCS is an open ocean capable vessel but is designed to defeat growing littoral threats and provide access and dominance in the coastal water battlespace.

A fast, maneuverable and networked surface combatant, the Independence variant LCS provides the warfighting capabilities and operational flexibility to accomplish multiple, critical missions including mine warfare, anti-submarine warfare and surface warfare with inherent capabilities that also support missions such as special operations and maritime interdiction.

Independence variant LCS delivers combat capability from core self-defense systems in concert with rapidly interchangeable, modular mission packages and an open architecture command and control system. The Independence variant's aviation facilities and watercraft launch and recovery capability support focused mission packages are outfitted with both manned and unmanned air, surface, and sub-surface vehicles. A mission bay and three weapons modules provide support service interfaces between mission package weapons, sensors and vehicles and the seaframe.

Modularity maximizes the flexibility of LCS and enables commanders to meet changing warfare needs, while also supporting faster, easier technological updates. LCS is networked to share tactical information with aircraft, ships, submarines, joint and coalition units both at sea and on shore, and with LCS operating groups.

The trimaran construction is unique to the US Navy and lends the Independence variant some unique capabilities and seakeeping characteristics. Its flight deck is the largest of any current US Navy surface combatant, and its hangar bay is able to hold two MH-60 helicopters.

General Dynamics was the prime contractor for LCS 2 (USS Independence) and LCS 4 (USS Coronado), whilst Austal has been the Prime contractor for all Independence variant LCS thereafter (from LCS 6 onwards).

For the LCS and EPF programs, Austal, as prime contractor, is teamed with General Dynamics Mission Systems, a business unit of General Dynamics. As the ship systems integrator, General Dynamics is responsible for the design, integration and testing of the ship’s electronic systems including the combat system, networks, and seaframe control. General Dynamics’ proven open architecture approach allows for affordable and efficient capability growth as technologies develop.

The US Navy's Independence variant LCS fleet, designed and constructed by Austal, comprises;

  • USS Independence (LCS 2)
  • USS Coronado (LCS 4)
  • USS Jackson (LCS 6)
  • USS Montgomery (LCS 8)
  • USS Gabrielle Giffords (LCS 10)
  • USS Omaha (LCS 12)
  • USS Manchester (LCS 14)
  • the future USS Tulsa (LCS 16)
  • the future USS Charleston (LCS 18)
  • the future USS Cincinnatti (LCS 20)
  • the future USS Kansas City (LCS 22)
  • the future USS Oakland (LCS 24)
  • the future USS Mobile (LCS 26)
  • the future USS Savannah (LCS 28)
  • the future USS Canberra (LCS 30)

 

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