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Interview: As Unmanned Systems Take On Greater Role, PEO LCS Advancing Its Programs
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the current Program head "... said the unmanned systems portfolio is exciting and full of promise ...
... great synergy ...
... pretty exciting ...
... leveraging the modularity of the ship ..."

I would've asked him, though, how many LCSs can sail under their own power right now
The unmanned systems portfolio within the Program Executive Office for Littoral Combat Ship is maturing as the Navy’s future plans are increasingly emphasizing these vehicles, putting the PEO in an important position to shape how the service incorporates these emerging technologies into future operations, PEO LCS Rear Adm. John Neagley told USNI News.

The shipbuilding side of the PEO’s portfolio may be shifting away from LCS and towards the upcoming frigate class, but Neagley said the unmanned systems portfolio is exciting and full of promise, and that it will help the LCS and the rest of the Navy fleet remain relevant warfighting assets.

In his first formal interview since taking over the PEO a year ago, Neagley said that Navy strategies and plans point to an increasing reliance on unmanned vehicles in all domains going forward, which bodes well for his PEO.

“The LCS was built from the ground up really to launch and recover unmanned vehicles, so in terms of the communications that are required to go talk to those things, it’s all baked into the software as part of the mission package computing environment, to be able to launch and recover those things, the stern ramps and the twin boom extensible crane, that’s what they’re there for,” the admiral said.
“So that’s the great synergy. But those systems aren’t limited to LCS. You could deploy them off a number of other systems if you wanted. So it’s pretty exciting. When you look at some of the larger studies we’ve done, the fleet architecture study, certainly unmanned has a big piece of that, and to be on the front end of that has been good for us.”

Neagley said relying on unmanned systems for mission capability is the ultimate modular design – instead of the LCS sitting in a long-term and expensive pier-side maintenance availability, “you can bring that combat capability real-time if you’re meeting [specifications in the interface control document]. You just have a new piece of equipment, whether it’s a UUV, USV, UAV, whatever it is; you know what the interface requirements are on the ship; you can do all that development out away from the ship and bring it real time, and then the ship doesn’t get tied up and it’s cheaper in the long run, and it allows you to iterate faster.”

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for future modular designs and that the future Navy would center around this modular and adaptable design for delivering combat power.

In discussing the modular LCS’s ability to evolve to meet fleet needs, Neagley noted it was designed for three main missions – anti-surface warfare, mine countermeasures and anti-submarine warfare – but that the PEO and the fleet have found other ways to leverage the ship.

No new formal “mission packages” have been created yet, but “we have shown the modularity of the ship, the ability to take stuff on the ship. I don’t call it a mission package, but … we’ve done some work with the [explosive ordnance disposal] crew doing expeditionary [mine countermeasures]; we’ve done a number of exercises with them where they’ve brought their whole kit onboard with their UUVs and their combat raiding craft, those kinds of things. So I think we’ll see more of that, really leveraging the modularity of the ship to bring new things out, get them out early to the fleet, let the fleet play with that, learn from them quickly. This is all about learning quickly: get it into the hands of sailors, and some of that stuff will gel and we may call it a mission package; some of it will just, hey, here’s a new capability we can bring. We’re a good platform for doing that kind of work.”

As for the original three mission packages, Neagley said the unmanned systems that reside within those mission packages are proceeding well through testing.

On the mine countermeasures package, the Airborne Laser Mine Detection System and the Airborne Mine Neutralization System reached initial operational capability last year to operate in blue water. The Coastal Battlefield Reconnaissance and Analysis (COBRA) for beach zone detection is undergoing initial operational test and evaluation now at Wallops Island, Va., and should reach IOC later this year, Neagley said.

Additionally, the Common Unmanned Surface Vehicle is undergoing testing at the South Florida Test Range now, deploying and retrieving the unmanned influence sweep system for mine sweeping missions. The CUSV has also been selected to serve some mine hunting missions and will begin testing in Florida next year with a towed sonar system, Neagley said.

For the surface warfare mission package, an early increment of which is already being used in LCS operations out of Singapore, more milestones are on the horizon. Technical evaluation and initial operational test and evaluation for the new surface-to-surface mission module – centered around a ship-launched Longbow Hellfire anti-ship missile – is set for 2018 on the Freedom-variant LCSs, according to Neagley. The Navy has already done structural tests in February from USS Detroit (LCS-7), and the PEO fired the weapon from a surrogate vessel. Formal developmental tests will begin this July from USS Milwaukee (LCS-5), demonstrating full integration of the weapon onto the LCS ahead of next year’s evaluation.

The anti-submarine escort mission module contract was awarded to Raytheon this spring, will begin testing in 2018, and should reach IOC in 2019. Outside of this escort mission module, a light-weight tow torpedo decoy will be installed on all LCSs outside of the mission package construct. Early decoy testing will begin this summer or fall, with formal testing taking place alongside the mission package testing in 2019. The whole ASW mission package should reach IOC by the end of Fiscal Year 2019.
 

FORBIN

Lieutenant General
Registered Member
Not the 10th the 9th commissioned, 5 Independence and 4 Freedom
7th LCS ( 2 Freedom + 5 Independence ) for San Diego now receive only Independence again at less 8
2 Freedom to Mayport receive only this Class again at less 9
Right now 26 LCS ordered.

US Navy commissions USS Gabrielle Giffords

The U.S. Navy commissioned its 10th littoral combat ship, the USS Gabrielle Giffords (LCS 10), at Pier 21 at the Port of Galveston, Texas, on June 10.

Adm. William Moran, Vice Chief of Naval Operations, delivered the ceremony’s principal address before officially commissioning the ship into service.

“As we man the rails today, blood gets pumped, the ship comes alive, and the heart begins to beat,” said Moran. “It’s the blood that is infused by the spirit, the attitude, and the courage of its namesake. We are so proud to be part of Gabrielle Giffords’ legacy to the United States.”

Following the commissioning, Dr. Jill Biden, the ship’s sponsor and wife of former Vice President Joe Biden, gave the time-honored Navy tradition of ordering the crew to “man our ship and bring her to life!”

The crowd sounded its approval as the crew ran aboard the ship to man their assigned stations and complete the ceremony of bringing the ship into active service to end a story that began more than five years ago.

In 2012 the Secretary of the Navy announced the future ship’s name, and USS Gabrielle Giffords became the 16th ship to be named for a woman and only the 13th ship to be named for a living person since 1850.

The ship is commanded by Cmdr. Keith Woodley, a native of St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, who leads the core crew of 50 officers and enlisted personnel.

During the ceremony Woodley praised the crew for their dedication and hard work in getting the ship ready for service.

“This is not just a new ship. This is a new class of ship and that makes it even more challenging for the crew,” said Woodley. “They have risen to that challenge and performed exceptionally well in getting this ship ready for service.”

Most other Navy surface combatant ships have a crew of 300 or more sailors, but littoral combat ships like Gabrielle Giffords have more automated systems and much smaller crews than their counterparts. Gabrielle Giffords’ crew is just 73 at the ship’s commissioning.

The 3,200-ton Gabrielle Giffords was built by Austal USA in Mobile, Alabama. The ship is 421 feet in length and has a beam of 103 feet and a navigational draft of 15 feet. The ship uses two gas turbine and two diesel engines to power four steerable waterjets to speeds in excess of 40 knots.

USS Gabrielle Giffords will now depart Galveston and begin her transit to her homeport at Naval Base San Diego.
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Jeff Head

General
Staff member
Super Moderator
Not the 10th the 9th commissioned, 5 Independence and 4 Freedom
7th LCS ( 2 Freedom + 5 Independence ) for San Diego now receive only Independence again at less 8
2 Freedom to Mayport receive only this Class again at less 9
Right now 26 LCS ordered.
A few shots of the Commissioning of LCS-10, USS Gabrielle Giffords:

uss_giffords_commissioning_83532-jpg-10d10_d5afbad563f6f2209aaeb97e21347853.nbcnews-ux-2880-1000.jpg

DCAOKbjW0AQvkmD.jpg

12302016-a2-1024x572.jpg

f1bb4d5e-bbc2-4dc4-b29b-95be19faf329-Tulsa3.jpg

Meanwhile, LCS-14, USS Tulsa, has been christened...the 7th INdeendence class. The yards producing the INdependence and the Freedom class are very busy, producing the vessels quicly:

13feba7f-c26e-451e-aa38-fd83b4db4c5f-large16x9_Tulsa2.jpg
 

dtulsa

Junior Member
A few shots of the Commissioning of LCS-10, USS Gabrielle Giffords:

View attachment 39408

View attachment 39409

View attachment 39410

View attachment 39411

Meanwhile, LCS-14, USS Tulsa, has been christened...the 7th INdeendence class. The yards producing the INdependence and the Freedom class are very busy, producing the vessels quicly:

View attachment 39412
Jeff have you heard any thing bout the OTH missile for the Freedom class I sure have not as yet also can you or anyone else explain the unfunded priorities list for all services thanks
 

Jeff Head

General
Staff member
Super Moderator
Jeff have you heard any thing bout the OTH missile for the Freedom class I sure have not as yet also can you or anyone else explain the unfunded priorities list for all services thanks
I believe t is necessarily going to be the NSM to begin with.

If they ever bring in a true MK-41 or PVLS Mk system, they will be able to add the LRASM. But that will be for the future.

The NSM will be perfectly acceptable to me.

To see the Freedom class or the Independence class go to see with eight NSM and 16 or 32 Hellfire VLS missiles would be OUTSTANDING, along with its gun, Sea-Ram, and ASW helos and newer/better sensors.

And that is where they are headed in the next few years.

But they are going to be building that Frigate version and for many years...and then they will serve for many years. Count on them getting even better upgrades nd systems over that life cycle.
 

dtulsa

Junior Member
I believe t is necessarily going to be the NSM to begin with.

If they ever bring in a true MK-41 or PVLS Mk system, they will be able to add the LRASM. But that will be for the future.

The NSM will be perfectly acceptable to me.

To see the Freedom class or the Independence class go to see with eight NSM and 16 or 32 Hellfire VLS missiles would be OUTSTANDING, along with its gun, Sea-Ram, and ASW helos and newer/better sensors.

And that is where they are headed in the next few years.

But they are going to be building that Frigate version and for many years...and then they will serve for many years. Count on them getting even better upgrades nd systems over that life cycle.
That's the impression I have too I've read and it has been posted hear as well the RFI will be issued by the end of June which is really fast for the government it really is anyone's guess right now what the frigate will actually end up being I've read in USNI and navy matters it could be a modified LCS all the way up to the Fremm and type 26 so it will certainly be interesting for sure by the way the type 26 steel will be cut next month's according to UK sources
 

FORBIN

Lieutenant General
Registered Member
I believe t is necessarily going to be the NSM to begin with.

If they ever bring in a true MK-41 or PVLS Mk system, they will be able to add the LRASM. But that will be for the future.

The NSM will be perfectly acceptable to me.

To see the Freedom class or the Independence class go to see with eight NSM and 16 or 32 Hellfire VLS missiles would be OUTSTANDING, along with its gun, Sea-Ram, and ASW helos and newer/better sensors.

And that is where they are headed in the next few years.

But they are going to be building that Frigate version and for many years...and then they will serve for many years. Count on them getting even better upgrades nd systems over that life cycle.

SUW module have 24 Helfire in VLS and 2 x 30 mm guns

And after possible 1 MQ-8C more big replace the 2 MQ-8B alongside MH-60S or R.

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looks like the USN starts to "reap the fruits" of revolutionary transformational quantum leap LCS Project:
CNO: Navy ‘Taking a Hard Look’ at Bringing Back Oliver Hazard Perry Frigates, DDG Life Extensions as Options to Build Out 355 Ship Fleet
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(just the link because, understandably, there's not a single word about LCSs inside)

and here's your Armchair Admiral Oct 9, 2015
...
  1. possibly OHP hull (or enlarged, but 4500 max.)
  2. possibly COGLAG propulsion (relatively quiet; but 35 knots max.)
  3. AEGIS Lite, one illuminator
  4. 16-cells VLS: 8 AAMs, 8 ASROCs (so that during a ASW mission the ship wouldn't rely on a helo to kill a sub, heck)
  5. organic helicopter, hangar; the outer, inner spaces arranged for:
  6. Harpoon launchers optionally from one dual to two quads,
  7. torpedo tubes optionally from one single up to two triple,
  8. assault boats (optionally small or big?)
  9. enough anti-FAC protection
...
an evolution of the OHP-class might've been ready by now
 

dtulsa

Junior Member
looks like the USN starts to "reap the fruits" of revolutionary transformational quantum leap LCS Project:
CNO: Navy ‘Taking a Hard Look’ at Bringing Back Oliver Hazard Perry Frigates, DDG Life Extensions as Options to Build Out 355 Ship Fleet
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(just the link because, understandably, there's not a single word about LCSs inside)

and here's your Armchair Admiral Oct 9, 2015
an evolution of the OHP-class might've been ready by now
I was just reading this interesting idea just bring 8 back though doesn't seem to be enough hulls plus what kind of updates and weaponry probably be best just to use your idea or Jeff Heads for the modified legend class either way we are talking some serious upgrades over the current LCS
 

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