Navy Introduces LCS to the Fleet

Story Number: NNS040712-10Release Date: 7/12/2004 12:08:00 PM
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By Journalist 3rd Class Kelly Neely, Commander, Naval Surface Forces Public Affairs

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- A group of enlisted Sailors and officers gathered in the Naval Station San Diego base theater recently to listen to a brief about the new littoral combat ship (LCS) and how that platform will contribute to the future of littoral warfare.

Commander, Naval Surface Force Pacific Assistant Chief of Staff for Warfare Requirements Capt. James Stewart presented this first in a series of briefs intended to educate fleet officers and Sailors on the new LCS program.

"The goal is to introduce LCS to the fleet Sailors because they're the people who will be operating these ships in the near future," said Stewart.

The brief spelled out the basic principals behind the operations of the LCS and outlined how the new ship will revolutionize littoral warfare. The LCS, a cutting-edge Navy warship, is fast, agile and capable of reconfiguring its mission focus to meet rapidly changing threats and operational requirements. According to Stewart, it can be operated in environments where employing larger multi-mission ships is undesireable.

The new ship will have the capability to deploy independently to overseas littoral regions, remain on station for extended periods of time, and operate either with a strike group or in groups via an innovative deployment concept such as Sea Swap.

The LCS program was developed to solve contemporary problems the military faces, and it is the first step towards changing the way the military meets mission requirements. According to Stewart, it is a "poster child" for a number of innovative concepts of the Chief of Naval Operations' Seapower 21 vision, including modularity, open systems architecture, FORCEnet, optimal manning and acquisition reform.

"In a time of tremendous change, we can't solve new problems using tools designed for the past," said Stewart. "We have to design our tools to face the new threats we have now and in the future."

According to Stewart, littoral dominance has become more important to our national strategy and to Naval operations. The LCS technology has the potential to transform the fleet and the way it meets the changing mission requirement of today's military.

"We need to get the word out, get the fleet Sailors onboard and excited about the change because we need them to make this a success," said Stewart.

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Artist concept of Lockheed Martin's Littoral Combat Ships (LCS) design.
Official U.S. Navy file photo of the Navy's new littoral combat ship (LCS). An entirely new breed of U.S. Navy warship, the LCS will operate with focused-mission packages that deploy manned and unmanned vehicles to execute missions.
May 27, 2004
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