Littoral Combat Ships - Fleet Introduction and Sustainment - LCS
Description The Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) program is a bold departure from traditional Navy shipbuilding programs based on its use of innovative acquisition, construction, manning, training and operational concepts. The LCS sustainment strategy was developed to take into account the unique design and manning of LCS and its associated mission modules. Elements of this strategy include reliance on off-ship support, a new paradigm of maintenance execution focused on scheduled preventive maintenance periods and off-ship performance of preventive and facilities maintenance, a crewing/deployment model which uses three rotating crews to operate two ships keeping one of the ships forward deployed, and reliance on shore based and virtual training.
Under the LCS sustainment concept, the majority of legacy shipboard functions of logistics, maintenance and training are moved ashore, thus removing these functions from the ship's crew and allowing for a reduction in underway crew size. The Maintenance Support Team (MST) is the enabler for LCS distance support. In order to support a minimally-manned ship, a modest shore support organization has been established and is being provided the latest distance support tools. The MST is responsible for coordinating with the Regional Maintenance Center (RMC), Mission Package Support Facility (MPSF), and supply enterprise for all LCS maintenance and logistics issues. The staff of the LCS Squadron (LCSRON), LCS Training Facility (LTF), and Surface Ship Type Commander (TYCOM) Afloat Training Group (ATG) provide training and certification functions. The LCSRON is the epicenter of shore support and services and has the authority to coordinate as necessary to ensure ships and mission packages (mission modules plus personnel) are fully supported.
There are three primary facilities designed to support LCS. The first, the LCS Support Facility (LSF), has offices for the LCSRON staff, off-ship core crews and Mission Package (MP) detachments, and pre-commissioning crews. The second is the LTF which houses key training equipment for qualification and certification of crews and detachments. The third is the MPSF which provides sustainment and depot maintenance support for all mission modules. Working in concert under the cognizance of the LCSRON Commodore, these three organizations are designed to fully support the ships and mission modules both at home and deployed..
Unlike most surface ships, traditional crew level maintenance for LCS is pushed ashore and corrective maintenance is performed using distance support and fly-away teams. The LCS sustainment strategy calls for frequent maintenance periods to be included in the operational schedule of the ship and associated mission packages - normally once per month for standard preventive maintenance and once every four months for more significant corrective maintenance. The bulk of the work accomplished during these Planned Maintenance Availabilities (PMAVs) and Continuous Maintenance Availabilities (CMAVs) is conducted by contracted maintenance teams. Support for deployed hulls is accomplished with tailored fly-away teams of U.S. contractors. LCS utilizes a significant degree of automation, including sensors, to implement robust condition based maintenance (CBM) and equipment health monitoring (EHM), further optimizing maintenance requirements for the ship.
LCS employs a 3:2:1 crewing/deployment model unique to the Surface Fleet, in which three rotating crews operate two ships, keeping one of the ships forward deployed. This rotational crew concept will yield a force-wide availability (i.e. forward presence) of 50 percent, as opposed to the 20-25 percent availability/presence of single-crewed legacy ships.
A key enabler of LCS rotational crewing is the LCS shore-based training and certification capability, which represents a significant advancement in the Surface Force approach to qualification of individual watchstanders and teams. Both crew and ship training is based on a virtual ship-centric concept, accomplished through a combination of classroom instruction, vendor training, shore-based trainers and sophisticated virtual reality training systems. This ensures LCS ships deploy with fully qualified sailors, allows for crew rotations while LCS ships are deployed and increases the forward presence time for each LCS ship.
Background The LCS Fleet Introduction and Sustainment Program Office (PMS 505) was established in 2011 to consolidate all aspects of LCS sustainment, training and logistics into a single program office, effectively streamlining processes and personnel that were previously scattered across multiple ship classes and locations. With multiple ships and mission modules being delivered on a yearly schedule, consolidating all of these support functions within a single program office was the most efficient and cost effective solution, providing direct support to the acquisition manager during the acquisition phase, the production manager during the production phase, as well as the sustainment manager during in-service operations.
Point Of Contact Office of Corporate Communication
Naval Sea Systems Command (OOD)
Washington, D.C. 20362
General Characteristics, Freedom variant
Builder: Lockheed Martin
Length: 387.6 ft. (118.1 meters)
Beam: 57.7 ft. (17.6 meters)
Displacement: approximately 3,400 MT full load
Draft: 14.1 ft. (4.3 meters)
Speed: 40+ knots
USS Freedom (LCS 1), San Diego, CA
PCU Sioux City (LCS 11) - under construction
PCU Wichita (LCS 13) - in pre-production phase
PCU Billings (LCS 15) - in pre-production phase
USS Fort Worth (LCS 3), San Diego, CA
PCU Milwaukee (LCS 5) - under construction
PCU Detroit (LCS 7) - under construction
PCU Little Rock (LCS 9) - under construction
General Characteristics, Independent variant
Builder: General Dynamics (LCS 2 and LCS 4), Austal USA (LCS 6 and follow)
Length: 418.6 ft. (127.6 meters)
Height: 103.7 ft. (31.6 meters)
Beam: 103.7 ft. (31.6 meters)
Displacement: approximately 3,100 MT full load
Draft: 14.4 ft. (4.4 meters)
PCU Gabrielle Giffords (LCS 10) - under construction