Rowden cited aircraft carriers as examples of ships
where the combat capability can be updated by changing the composition of the air wing. The aircraft that
flew off USS Enterprise when the carrier joined the fleet
were vastly different than the ones it had on its final
deployment five decades later.
Rowden explained how the U.S. Navy’s Littoral
Combat Ship (LCS) embraces a new concept where
combat capability comes in containerized mission
systems, vehicles, sensors and weapons, connected
with standard interfaces, to address focused missions
of anti-submarine warfare, mine warfare or anti-surface warfare.
“The systems come in modules, and the modules
come in packages. They are procured separately from the
seaframe, and can be readily adapted and updated to
meet specific and evolving threats, and meet the demand
signal from the combatant commander,” he said.
The attendees heard from speakers from the Royal
Navy who discussed the U.K.’s new Type 26 frigate
“Global Combat Ship” program from the government
acquisition industry design and construction, and operations point of view. The Type 26, which is expected to
enter service around 2021, has space for a variety of modularized payloads and is intended to be operated with
manned and unmanned off-board systems.
In contrasting approaches compared to the focused
mission of the LCS, the multimission Type 26 is designed
for joint and multinational operations — the full spectrum of warfare. But both make good use of internal
Speakers from Sweden and Denmark gave their per-
spectives to designing and constructing new ship pro-
grams, and the ability to upgrade and modernize plat-
forms to address emerging missions and keep pace
with threats, from an operational perspective of
addressing unique requirements. Both nations have
noted the new emphasis on building or adapting ships
to operate far from home waters to participate in inter-
national coalitions, such as anti-piracy operations in
the Indian Ocean, and be interoperable with other
ships in multinational task groups.
“The Swedish Navy is small in size, and so is the size of
our ships,” said Capt. Magnus Jönsson, commander of the
3rd Surface Flotilla.
Jönsson discussed Sweden’s fast and lethal Visby-class missile corvettes. The Visbys are built in Sweden
of an all-composite design by Kockums; with a BAE
Systems Bofors 57mm gun; and RBS 15 surface-to-surface anti-ship missiles, anti-submarine torpedoes
and Sea Giraffe radar, Ceros fire-control system and
9LV combat management system, all made in Sweden
“We have a lot of multi-functionality within the
same hull, but you can’t see it because it’s completely
within the stealth hull. We are not a NATO nation,”
New ships also require new
ways of training. The commander
of the Royal Navy’s maritime warfare school at HMS Collingwood,
Capt Steve Dainton, said simulators can train individuals, watch
teams and entire battle groups.
The new technology offers flexibility.
“We can be a Type 23 in the
morning and a Type 45 in the afternoon just by moving consoles
around,” he said.
That includes training for information superiority, said Royal
Navy Capt Ian Annett.
“Information is no longer just an
enabler; it’s now a core warfighting
capability,” he said. ■
WWW.SEAPOWERMAGAZINE.ORG SEAPOWER / MARCH 2014
The U.K. Royal Navy’s new Type 26 “Global Combat Ship” is expected to
enter service around 2021. In contrast to the focused missions of the U.S.
Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship, the multimission Type 26 frigate is designed for
joint and multinational operations.