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LCS Freedom  
Initial Operational Capability (IOC): 8 November 2008
Total Production: 8
Unitary Cost: USD$680 million
Also Known As: Flight 0 LCS and Littoral Combat Ship
Origin: United States of America
Corporations: Bollinger Shipyards, Gibbs & Cox, Lockheed Martin* and Marinette Marine   (*) lead contractor
Parent System: LCS Freedom
Initial Operational Capability (IOC): 8 November 2008
Total Production: 22
Production Cost: USD$11 billion
Total Cost: USD$11 billion
Family Members: LCS 1 Flight II and MMSC
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Description: The Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) is a revolutionary US Navy program aimed at developing a multi-purpose, modular surface combatant capable of achieving dominance in the littoral environment. In May 2004, the US Navy selected two separate teams lead by Lockheed Martin and General Dynamics' Bath Iron Works for the construction and demonstration of two Flight 0 LCS ships. It is expected that the US Navy will take a decision on the Flight 1 LCS in the 2007-2008 timeframe. The US Navy plans call for the procurement of 30 to 60 vessels through 2020. The current budgetary information about LCS program calls for the procurement of 55 ships. As of early 2008, the US Navy had allocated $1.93 billion to this project for the construction of two Flight 0 LCS demonstration ships to achieve initial operational capability in 2008.

The US Navy will use the final LCS ship to counter asymmetric threats such as quiet coastal diesel submarines, fast patrol boats and crafts, new generation mines and terror attacks like the suffered by destroyer USS Cole in Yemen. Shallow water hull design compatibility is a must for such a mission profiles. Helicopters and Unmanned Air Vehicles (UAV) will be able to operate form ship's aft flight deck. Besides, a variety of manned and unmanned ground vehicles and watercrafts carried inside the cargo deck are meant to execute a wide range of missions.

The key characteristics established by the US Navy for the LCS program are: stealth technology for enhanced survivability, shallow draft, more payload per ton than any US Navy warship, huge interior volume, long endurance and global networked communications to cooperate and share information with other sea, land and airborne platforms. Thanks to the mission modules approach, the reconfigurable LCS will be able to perform special operations forces support, high-speed transit, maritime interdiction, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR), and counter-terrorism missions. In addition, LCS will also be a FORCEnet enabler, sharing tactical information with other naval ships, submarines, aircraft, joint units and LCS groups.

Lockheed-Martin semi-planning steel monohull with aluminum superstructure design would be able to reach a maximum speed of more than 40 knots. The ship features the COMBATSS-21 open architecture combat management system. It can launch and recover aircraft at sea state 5 and watercrafts at sea state 4. The propulsion system combines two diesel engines and two MT30 gas turbines with steerable waterjets (CODAG-WARP) for operation in shallow waters. Its flight deck and hangar allow operation of up to two MH-60S/R helicopters or one MH-60 helicopter and three MQ-8B Fire Scout Vertical Takeoff Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (VTUAVs).

A ramp at stern and a side door provide primary and secondary launch and recovery capabilities for watercrafts. Standard equipment includes a single 57mm gun; a rolling aircraft missile (RAM) launcher; MK-46 machine guns; decoys and countermeasures; air (TRS-3D radar), surface and subsurface sensors; a modular weapon zone for mission focused equipment; and higher quality of life for the crew than existing US Navy fighting ships.

Lockheed Martin was expected to build two Flight 0 LCS to be delivered to the US Navy before the end of 2008. The US Navy cancelled the second ship in 2007. The US Navy awarded Lockheed-Martin-led team a $188 million contract option for detail design and construction of the first Flight 0 Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) on December 15, 2004. LCS 1 construction stated at Marinette Marine in Marinette, Wisconsin, on February first, 2005. In May 2005, the US Navy named the LCS 1 ship USS Freedom. The Freedom keel laying ceremony occurred on June 2, 2005, at Marinette Marine, Marinette, Wisconsin. LCS 1 USS Freedom was christened on September 23, 2006 at Marinette Marine Corp. in Marinette, Wisconsin.

In November 2004 Lockheed-Martin selected United Defense (now BAE Systems) MK 110 57mm naval gun for its flight 0 LCS proposal. Mk 110 gun system along with Mk 295 intelligent ammunition will provide self-defense capability for the LCS against smaller, fast moving threats. In 2004, the US Navy signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the US Army to procure the NLOS-LS PAM weapon system for the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS). The LCS armed with revolutionary NLOS-LS PAM was projected to be ready in fiscal year 2008.

In late April 2006, the US Navy made public that the first four LCS ships would be homeported at Naval Station San Diego, California. This decision was influenced by the Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) emphasis on the Pacific theater. Freedom-class ships will feature two rotational crews named gold and blue similar to Trident submarines rotational crew system.

LCS Freedom Specifications

Crew: 75
Beam: 17.5 meter (57 foot)
Draft: 4.10 meter (13.5 foot)
Length: 115 meter (378 foot)
Main Gun Caliber: 57 millimeter
Top Speed: 47 knot (24.2 mps)
Full Displacement: 3,000 ton
CEP: Circular Error Probable
Meters (m)   Kilometers (km)   Nautic Miles (nm)   Inch (in)   Yard (yd)   Foot (ft)   Millimeter (mm)
Pound (lb)   Kilogram (kg)   kN (KiloNewton)   Ton (t)
Meters per Second (mps)   Kilometers per Hour (kph)   Knot (kt)   Miles per Hour (mph)
Liter (l)   Galon (gl)
Year (yr)   Minutes (min)   Second (sec)
Shaft-Horse-Power (shp)

LCS Freedom News

There are 78 news between
6 Jan 2003 and 6 Jan 2020
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Monday, January 6, 2020AQS-24B Mine Hunting Sonar Successfully Completes Initial in-Water Testing
Thursday, September 27, 2018US Navy Orders LCS 29
Monday, June 4, 2018Knifefish Unmanned Undersea Vehicle Completes Critical Test Phase
Wednesday, May 16, 2018USS Milwaukee Littoral Combat Ship Successfully Tests Longbow Hellfire Surface-to-Surface Missiles
Friday, October 6, 2017US Navy Places Order for Two Additional Littoral Combat Ships
Monday, September 11, 2017Raytheon Selects Ducommun to Build Naval Strike Missile Fire Control Systems
Tuesday, May 23, 2017Raytheon to Develop New Variable Depth Sonar for US Navy Littoral Combat Ship
Friday, March 10, 2017US Navy Tests Fires Longbow Hellfire Missile from Littoral Combat Ship
Tuesday, August 30, 2016Raytheon and US Navy Improve AN/AQS-20A Mine Detection Capability
Tuesday, August 23, 2016COMBATSS-21 Open Architecture Combat Management System Selected for US Navy Frigates

Operators & Related Equipment

United States of America8
Nov 20153

Grand Total 81
Cannons & Gear
Mk 110 Mod 0x1
Mk 46 Mod 2x2
Offensive Weapons
Propulsion Systems
Protection Systems
Mk-31 RAMx1
Sensor Systems
Series 8000
Support Aircraft
MH-60R Strikehawkx2
MH-60S Knighthawkx2
MQ-8B Fire Scoutx3

LCS Freedom Ship Listing

SerialNameStatusLaunch DateCommissionDecommission
LCS 1 USS Freedom23 Sep 20068 Nov 20082021
LCS 3 USS Fort Worth4 Dec 201022 Sep 20122021
LCS 5 USS Milwaukee18 Dec 201321 Nov 2015-
LCS 7 USS Detroit18 Oct 201422 Oct 2016-
LCS 9 USS Little Rock18 Jul 201516 Dec 2017-
LCS 11 USS Sioux City30 Jan 201617 Nov 2018-
LCS 13 USS Wichita17 Sep 201612 Jan 2019-
LCS 15 USS Billings1 Jul 20173 Aug 2019-

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