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Littoral Combat Ships - Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Mission Package

 
Description
A Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) equipped with an Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Mission Package (MP) provides the Joint Force Commanders with the capability to conduct detect-to-engage operations against modern diesel-electric and nuclear submarines in littoral areas and defeat those that pose an immediate threat. The capability enables operational commanders assured access in contested, anti-access, and area denial littoral environments. Specific ASW capabilities include protecting forces in transit, protecting joint operating areas and establishing ASW barriers. The LCS ASW mission is to conduct ASW operations in support of a carrier strike group (CSG), amphibious readiness group (ARG), LCS surface action group (SAG) or independently. This will allow for the protection of CSG and ARG operating areas, the establishment of ASW barriers and the escort of high-value units (HVUs) into and within theater. The LCS ASW MP will be effective in the shallow littoral, as well as in the deep water approaches to the littorals.
 
Features
An ASW Mission Package is under development for delivery in the 2018 timeframe. Planned components include:

ASW Escort Module
• Variable depth sonar (VDS)
• Multi-function towed array (MFTA) acoustic receiver
• Launch, handling and recovery equipment
• Signal processing and systems control
• Support containers
Torpedo Defense Module
• Detection/Alert: MFTA with Acoustic Intercept (ACI)
• Countermeasures: Light Weight Tow (LWT)
Aviation Module
• MH-60R Helicopter
Airborne Low Frequency Sonar (ALFS)
Sonobuoys (Active/Passive)
APS153 Periscope Detection radar
MK46/50/54 Torpedo
• One MQ-8B Vertical Takeoff Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (1)
• Support containers
ASW Mission Management / Command and Control (C2) Center
• Mission Package Application Software (MPAS)
• Mission Package Computing Environment (MPCE)
 
Background
The Littoral Combat Ship is a fast, agile and networked surface combatant optimized for operating in the littorals. The primary missions for the LCS include countering diesel submarine threats, littoral mine threats and surface threats, such as small surface craft attacks, to assure maritime access for joint forces. The underlying strength of the LCS lies in its innovative design approach, applying modularity for operational flexibility. In executing each mission, LCS employs a modular Mine Countermeasures (MCM) MP, Surface Warfare (SUW) MP or Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) MP. Therefore, each MP can be quickly installed aboard an LCS ship to fulfill a specific mission, and then be removed, maintained and upgraded at the Mission Package Support Facility (MPSF) for future use aboard any LCS ship.

MPs were created for LCS in response to an ever changing threat environment and identification of warfighting gaps in the littorals. Because the Navy operates two different LCS ship designs, all MPs are interchangeable between both ship designs. An MP consists of mission modules (MMs), mission crew sailors and support aircraft with aviation sailors. MMs combine mission systems (vehicles, sensors and weapons) and support equipment that install into the seaframe via standard interfaces. Thus, a MP fielded on board an LCS is described in three layers:

• Mission Systems = Vehicles, Sensors, and Weapons
• Mission Module = Mission Systems + Support Equipment
• Mission Package = Mission Modules + Mission Crew Detachments + Aircraft

The Navy has a requirement for 40 small surface combatants. Twenty-eight will be LCS and 12 will be frigates (FF). Thirteen ASW MMs are currently planned for procurement.
 
Point Of Contact
Office of Corporate Communication (SEA 00D)
Naval Sea Systems Command
Washington, D.C. 20376
 
Last Update: 6 December 2016