Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Program: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS WASHINGTON DC CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE
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The Littoral Combat Ship LCS is a relatively inexpensive Navy surface combatant equipped with modular plug-and-fight mission packages. The Navy wants to field a force of 55 LCSs. The first two LCS-1 and LCS-2 were procured in FY2005 and FY2006 and were commissioned into service on November 8, 2008, and January 16, 2010. Another two LCS-3 and LCS-4 were procured in FY2009 and are under construction. Two more were procured in FY2010, and the Navys proposed FY2011 budget requested funding to procure another two. Navy plans call for procuring an additional 16 in FY2012-FY2015 at a rate of four ships per year. There are two very different LCS designs-one developed and produced by an industry team led by Lockheed, and another developed and produced by an industry team led by General Dynamics. LCS-1 and LCS-3 use the Lockheed design LCS-2 and LCS-4 use the General Dynamics design. On September 16, 2009, the Navy announced a proposed acquisition strategy under which the Navy would hold a competition to pick a single design to which all LCSs procured in FY2010 and subsequent years would be built i.e., carry out a design down select. The winner of the down select would be awarded a contract to build 10 LCSs over the five-year period FY2010-FY2014, at a rate of two ships per year. The Navy would then hold a second competition-open to all bidders other than the shipyard building the 10 LCSs in FY2010-FY2014-to select a second shipyard to build up to five additional LCSs to the same design in FY2012-FY2014 one ship in FY2012, and two ships per year in FY2013-FY2014. These two shipyards would then compete for contracts to build LCSs procured in FY2015 and subsequent years.
- Marine Engineering