Navy needs new «docks»

It is not a secret of the Universe our World is changing. After the Russian-Georgian and Russian-Ukrainian war, NATO revised its understanding of Russia. Moscow made no secret of his ambition with regard to its neighbors. Thus, the United States understood the need to maintain amphibious fleet in a constant state of readiness to be able to move troops in Europe.

LPD Flight II
LPD Flight II, Huntington Ingalls Industries, Inc.

As said Sam LaGrone, the USNI Online Editor at the U.S. Naval Institute, Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) has revised its plan to use the hull form of the San Antonio-class amphibious warship (http://navyarm.blogspot.ru/2014/11/san-antonio-class-lpd.html) as a candidate for the Navy’s next generation amphibious warship – LX(R).

HII’s new Flight IIA modifies the original LPD-17 design by removing some of the higher end capabilities of the San Antonio and creating a so-called amphibious truck to replace the existing class of aging Whidbey Island (http://navyarm.blogspot.ru/2014/11/whidbey-island-lsd.html) and Harpers Ferry (http://navyarm.blogspot.ru/ 2014/11/harpers-ferry-class-lsd.html) 16,000-ton landing ship docks (LSD).

The largest improvement in capability will be to the ship’s communication and aviation ability.

The current LSDs have a minimal command and control capability – the ability to communicate with other U.S. military forces and coordinate different types of aircraft and smaller vessel – and no native ability to host and maintain the aircraft of the trio of ships that make up the Navy’s Amphibious Ready Groups (ARGs).

The LX(R) will be much bigger than the ships it will be replacing – displacing about 7,000 more than the current LSDs at 23,470 tons, HII officials told USNI News.

Instead of the four Colt-Pielstick diesel engines, HII’s model reduces the prime mover count to two unspecified main propulsion diesel engines (MPDE).

The Mark-46 30mm gun weapon system is replaced with a Mark-38 Mod 2 remote controlled 25mm chain gun providing offensive and defensive ability.

The AN/SPS-48E air search radar is replaced with a TRS-3D, which is currently outfitted on the National Security Cutter providing a more suitable sensor for its mission.

The Flight IIA retains about half of the medical spaces on the LPD. Company officials also said the current iteration would feature two spots for the Navy’s LCAC hovercraft or one utility landing craft (LCU) – which is in line with the Navy’s current thinking for requirements for the LX(R). Other changes include reducing the troop capacity from 800 to 500 with a crew of about 400 sailors.

Though HII is original designers and builders of the LPD-17 ships, they are not guaranteed the design and construction contract for the new LX(R) ship class. General Dynamics NASSCO in San Diego, California has also helped the Navy in its current push to lower the cost at the start of the acquisition process and is considered likely to bid on the final work.

The Navy’s frontend analysis of alternatives process for LX(R) has been described as, «the best ship design conversation we’ve had in a long time inside the government», NAVSEA chief Vice Adm. William Hilarides said in May.

HII officials didn’t announce a cost estimate for their version, but according to past information from the Navy a San Antonio LX(R) could cost about $1.64 billion for the lead ship with follow-ons costing about $1.4 billion for a total of 11 ships.

Flight II vs. LPD 17
Flight II vs. LPD 17

 

Dimensions

Overall length: 684 ft, 208.5m

Beam, DWL: 105 ft, 31.9m

Full load Draft: 21.7 ft, 6.6m

 

Weights (long tons)

Lightship: 16,600

Full load at delivery: 22,800

 

Performance

Sustained Speed: 20+ knots

Installed Power: 26,820 SHP

Service Life: 40 years

 

Machinery Systems

20 MW MPDE

Direct Drive Reduction Gears

2 x Controllable Pitch Propellers

 

Amphibious Systems

Vehicle Square (net): 24,600 sq ft

Cargo Cube (net): 17,000 cu ft

Cargo Fuel, JP-5: 310,000 gal

Landing Craft: 2 x LCAC or 1 x LCU

Well Deck Operations: Wet/Dry

 

Navigation

NAVSSI

AN/UQN-4A Sonar Sounding Set

AN/WQN-2 DSVL

AN/SPS-73 Surface Search Radar

AN/WSN-7

AN/URN-26 TACAN

Anti-Jam GPS

Integrated Bridge

 

Communications

SI COMMS

HF/VHF/UHF Voice/Data

DWTS/EPLRS

UHF/SHF/EHF SATCOM

SMS

Secure VTC

SWAN

 

EW & Decoy

AN/SLQ-25

AN/SLQ-32A

MK-36 SRBOC

 

Aviation Facilities

Land/Launch Spots

2 x CH-53E or

2 x MV-22 or

2 x CH-46 or

2 x AH/UH-1

 

Electric Plant

AC Zonal Distribution System

10 KW

400 Hz Frequency Converters

 

Auxiliary Systems

A/C Plants (CFC Free): 1,500 tons installed

RO Plants: 72,000 GPD installed

Cargo Elevators: 12,000 lb capacity

Lift Platform: 6,000 lb capacity

 

Medical Facilities

Medical Operating Rooms: 1

Hospital Ward Beds: 8

Dental Operating Rooms: 1

 

Accommodations

Ship’s complement: 396

Troop: 506 Total

 

Surveillance

2D/3D Radars

AN/SPQ-9B – Fire Control Radar

AN/UPX-29 Central IFF

 

Weapons

2 x RAM Launchers

2 x 25mm Mark-38

4 x .50 Caliber Machine Guns

 

Command and Control

Links 11, 16

AN/SPQ-12V

NTCSS

GCCS-M

SGS/AC

CENTRIX

 

Survivability

Collective Protection System (Single Zone)

Strengthened Structure Against Whipping

Fragmentation Protection

Water Mist Fire Extinguising System

Degaussing System

 

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