Full Speed Ahead for LCS 7

Lockheed Martin-led team remains focused on performance, cost as Navy awards contract for next LCS


file The Navy recently awarded the Lockheed Martin team a contract to build the nation’s seventh LCS. The team anticipates receiving contracts for an additional eight ships through 2015.

Capable of sailing more than 47 knots an hour, the U.S. Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) is built for speed, and now its procurement is moving nearly as fast as the ship.

In December, the U.S. Navy awarded an industry team led by Lockheed Martin – one of two teams building the LCS – a contract to construct its third ship of the class. Less than three months later, the Lockheed Martin team received another contract from the Navy – this one in mid-March for $376 million to build the nation’s seventh LCS.  The Lockheed Martin team anticipates receiving contracts for an additional eight ships through 2015.

“As the Lockheed Martin team constructs this next ship, we will remain focused on performance and cost,” said Joe North, vice president of Lockheed Martin’s Littoral Ship Systems business. “The Navy’s 10-ship award provides stability to this program, allowing industry to more efficiently meet the customer’s need for an affordable, multi-mission surface combatant.”

The Navy also recently awarded Lockheed Martin $34 million to provide class design services for its LCS program. The company will provide a variety of engineering and planning yard activities, including assessing engineering and production challenges and evaluating the cost and schedule risks from affordability efforts to reduce acquisition and lifecycle costs.

Commissioned in 2008, Lockheed Martin’s first LCS, USS Freedom, is now fully integrated into the Navy’s fleet. Based at its homeport of San Diego, Calif., the ship completed a successful maiden deployment in 2010 and has sailed more than 50,000 nautical miles.

The Lockheed Martin-led team is also nearing completion of its second LCS, Fort Worth, at the Marinette Marine shipyard in Wisconsin. Fort Worth is more than 85 percent complete and was christened and launched in December 2010 – a milestone reached just 20 months after contract award. The ship remains on schedule and on budget for delivery to the Navy in 2012.