frigates

USS Independence, LCS-2

WASHINGTON: Is the Littoral Combat Ship a real warship? That question has bedeviled the small, sleek, lightly armed ships for years. Now it’s taken on new urgency as the Defense Department and the Navy both refocus on high-intensity, high-tech warfighting against “great powers” — i.e. China and Russia. Defense Secretary Ash Carter wants to cut… Keep reading →

amphibiousreadinessgroup

WASHINGTON: Defense Secretary Ashton Carter wants to cut the Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship program to buy more missiles, aircraft, and upgrades to ships. That’s good as far as it goes, eminent naval historian and analyst Norman Polmar told me this morning — “in my opinion the decision should have been five years ago” — but it’s… Keep reading →

A Navy F-35C conducts its first-ever arrested landing aboard the carrier USS Nimitz

WASHINGTON: The conference version of the defense policy bill for 2016 puts the Navy on notice in multiple high-priority programs. In three areas — carriers, the UCLASS drone, and LCS — Sen. John McCain‘s tough positions prevailed over the House, albeit with some compromises around the edges. In a fourth — Ticonderoga-class cruisers — it was a House leader,… Keep reading →

Lockheed Martin photo

Once, the Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship was a nightmare of cost overruns, schedule slips, and design flaws. That was especially true of Lockheed Martin’s LCS-1, the Freedom, with its hull cracks and electrical failures. Eight ships later, the design is fixed and the price has dropped by a third . Production is moving at such a… Keep reading →

USS Coronado

CAPITOL HILL: The war over the Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship is far from over. This morning, Senate Armed Services Committee chairman John McCain warned Navy leaders that their drive towards an upgraded LCS frigate may be repeating the mistakes that resulted in the original, much-criticized LCS design. “Without a clear capabilities-based assessment, it is not clear… Keep reading →

(FILES) This file photo taken on Septemb

  PENTAGON: The Navy 2016 budget yields to Congress’s strong opposition to the service’s previous efforts to cut the active fleet to save money. It funds nuclear refueling and overhaul of the aircraft carrier USS George Washington –that it had tried to retire — and modifies its plan to put 11 cruisers and an amphibious ship… Keep reading →

Tomahawk cruise missile launch against the Khorasan group in Syria

Last week, the US Navy made waves by announcing two bold ideas for the surface fleet: a new concept of warfighting called “distributed lethality” — “If it floats, it fights” — and a new name for the controversial Littoral Combat Ship — now called a “frigate.” We asked Bryan Clark, a former special assistant to… Keep reading →

The two variants of the Navy Littoral Combat Ship -- LCS-1 Freedom and LCS-2 Independence - side by side off the California coast.

CRYSTAL CITY: What’s in a frigate? That which we call a Littoral Combat Ship by any other name would smell as sweet — or stink as bad, according to LCS’s many critics. While LCS is being redesigned and renamed, there’s a lot of hard work and hard choices required to make the improvements real. Yesterday,… Keep reading →

The first Littoral Combat Ship, USS Freedom, on its way to Singapore last year.

ARLINGTON: In the race to replace the Navy’s controversial Littoral Combat Ship, the leading contender seems to be…. a better Littoral Combat Ship. That’s the clear implication of what we’ve been hearing from Navy leadership, and it’s clear from  press briefings today that LCS contractor Lockheed Martin feels pretty confident it can do the job.… Keep reading →

The two Littoral Combat Ship variants, LCS-1 Freedom (far) and LCS-2 Independence (near).

PENTAGON: John D. Burrow is in a hurry – and if you think you know what the Navy needs as an alternative to its controversial Littoral Combat Ship, you will be too. Minutes ago, the Navy released a pair of Requests For Information (RFIs) on LCS alternatives – one RFI for concepts for the ship as… Keep reading →

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