ciencies as compared to other first-of-class warships.”
Baribeau was not at liberty to
release specific findings of the board.
conducted, but launches of rigid-hull inflatable boats
were conducted from the boat door in the port side.
Though no mission packages were onboard for sea trials, the mission bay and flight deck impressed observers
with their sheer size. Moosally said the flight deck for the
helicopters and unmanned aerial vehicles is larger than
those of the fleet’s cruisers and destroyers.
The Navy’s Board of Inspection and Survey put
Freedom through acceptance trials in early September,
with good news for Lockheed Martin’s team.
“LCS 1 performed extremely well during this operation,” said Capt. James Murdoch, the Navy’s LCS program
manager. “There is much more work to be done, but we
are very encouraged by the results we’ve seen so far.”
“The board found the ship to be capable, well built
and inspection-ready,” Baribeau said. “The ship was presented to the board with high levels of completion in
production and test. These levels of completion, coupled
with good quality installations and excellent craftsmanship, resulted in relatively low numbers of material defi-
The Navy introduced the ASW mission package Sept. 19 at Point
Mugu, Calif., making one of each
package type available for testing by
the LCS. The surface warfare package was rolled out at Dahlgren, Va.,
July 11, and the first MCM package
was presented in 2007.
A second surface warfare package is being produced, and the Navy
has proposed procurement of two
MCM and one surface warfare
package in 2009, a fourth surface
warfare package in 2010 and the
second ASW package in 2011. A
total of 64 packages are planned for
the Navy — 24 MCM, 24 surface
warfare and 16 ASW.
The three types of packages
have some elements in common,
such as the MQ-8B Fire Scout
vertical-takeoff unmanned aerial
vehicle, which first flew with its
Brite Star II electro-optical/infrared
sensor and Tactical Common Data
Link Aug. 9.
The WLD- 1 Remote Multimission Vehicle, an unmanned
surface vehicle that operates just under the surface
with an exposed mast, is equipped with MCM systems
and also can tow acoustic arrays for the ASW package.
The WLD- 1 is under evaluation on an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer.
The MH-60R helicopter supports the surface warfare and ASW missions with its sensors, torpedoes and
missiles, while the MH-60S version can carry five different MCM systems.
The surface warfare package includes the Mk50
30mm rapid-fire gun, two of which can be quickly
installed in modules of the ship’s superstructure. The
Non-Line-of-Sight Launch System also can be inserted
on the ship, enabling the LCS to fire the Precision
Attack Missile against fast-maneuvering boats, among
The ASW package also includes, among other systems, an unmanned surface vehicle — a rigid-hull inflatable boat — to tow an acoustic source, passive acoustic
array and a dipping sonar for detection of submarines.
During its 11-day sea trials, Freedom’s Mk110 57mm gun, TRS-3D radar and
open-architecture combat system were exercised.