Saturday, July 18, 2009

LCS 1 Completes Structural Test Firing

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- USS Freedom (LCS 1) successfully completed structural test firing (STF) exercises off the coast of Virginia June 25; the STF exercise was held to test the ship's weapon systems to ensure they operate as installed and integrated with the hull structure.

During the week of tests, Freedom fired two Rolling Airframe Missile test rounds, 70 MK 110 57mm gun rounds, 24 chaff rounds and more than 1,000 50-calibre and smaller rounds.

"The successful completion of these live fire events proves the design, construction and integration of these weapon systems on LCS 1," said Capt. Jim Murdoch, LCS program manager with the Navy's Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships. "The fit and function of these systems meets our expectations."

In addition to the ship's crew, the tests were conducted by engineers from Naval Sea Systems Command's Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC) Port Hueneme's Louisville detachment as well as NSWC Dahlgren.

LCS is a new breed of U.S. Navy warship with versatile warfighting capabilities, capable of open-ocean operation but optimized for littoral, or coastal, missions. Operational experience and analyses indicate that potential adversaries will employ asymmetric means to deny U.S. and allied forces access into critical coastal regions, such as strategic chokepoints and vital economic sea lanes. LCS is specifically designed to defeat such "anti-access" threats, which include fast surface craft, quiet diesel submarines and various types of mines.

LCS 1 began its second industrial post-delivery availability July 8 at Colonna's Shipyard in Norfolk. This availability is a planned event in Freedom's post-delivery period to provide for the correction of problems discovered during test and trials events conducted so far. The post delivery test and trials period is intended to fully examine the ship's installed systems' performance and allow the ship's crew to become familiar with and exercise the ship's systems.

PEO Ships is responsible for the development and acquisition of U.S. Navy surface ships and is currently managing the design and construction of a wide range of ship classes and small boats and craft. These platforms range from major warships such as frontline surface combatants and amphibious assault ships to air-cushioned landing craft, oceanographic research ships and special warfare craft. PEO Ships has delivered 32 major warships and hundreds of small boats and craft from more than 30 shipyards and boat builders across the United States.