Christening of
Indianapolis

The U.S. Navy christened its newest Freedom-variant Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), USS Indianapolis (LCS-17), during a 10 a.m. CDT ceremony Saturday, April 14, in Marinette, Wisconsin.

The future littoral combat ship USS Indianapolis (LCS-17) is moved from an indoor production facility in Marinette, Wisconsin, to launchways in preparation for its upcoming launch into the Menomenee River (U.S. Navy photo courtesy of Marinette Marine by Val Ihde/Released)
The future littoral combat ship USS Indianapolis (LCS-17) is moved from an indoor production facility in Marinette, Wisconsin, to launchways in preparation for its upcoming launch into the Menomenee River (U.S. Navy photo courtesy of Marinette Marine by Val Ihde/Released)

The future USS Indianapolis, designated LCS-17, honors Indianapolis, Indiana’s state capital. She will be the fourth ship to bear the name.

The principal speaker was former U.S. Senator Richard Lugar of Indiana. Mrs. Jill Donnelly, wife of U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly of Indiana, served as the ship’s sponsor. In a time-honored Navy tradition, she christened the ship by breaking a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow.

«The future USS Indianapolis honors more than a city, it pays tribute to the legacy of those who served during the final days of World War II on board USS Indianapolis (CA-35)», said Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer. «This ship will continue the proud legacy of service embodied in the name Indianapolis, and is a testament to the true partnership between the Navy and industry».

USS Indianapolis (LCS-17) is the fourth ship to carry the name of Indiana’s capital city. The most recent Indianapolis was a Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine, commissioned Jan. 5, 1980, which served through the end of the Cold War before being decommissioned in 1998. The first Indianapolis was a steamer built for the U.S. Shipping Board (USSB) and commissioned directly into the Navy in 1918. After two runs to Europe, the ship was returned to the USSB following the war. It is the second Indianapolis (CA 35)-a cruiser-that is perhaps the best known of the three. The ship was sunk in the final days of World War II, and her crew spent several days in the water awaiting rescue. But it was her impressive war record that first brought the ship to the attention of U.S. Navy leaders and the American public. The ship and her crew served faithfully throughout the war, seeing action in the Aleutians, the Gilbert Islands, Saipan, the Battle of the Philippine Sea, Iwo Jima and Okinawa. In addition to frequently serving as the flagship of the U.S. Fifth Fleet, the ship earned 10 battle stars for World War II service and successfully completed a top-secret mission delivering components of the instrument that ended the war.

The future USS Indianapolis is a fast, agile, focused-mission platform designed for operation in near-shore environments yet capable of open-ocean operation. It is designed to defeat asymmetric «anti-access» threats such as mines, quiet diesel submarines and fast surface craft.

LCS is a modular, reconfigurable ship, designed to meet validated fleet requirements for SUrface Warfare (SUW), Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) and Mine CounterMeasures (MCM) missions in the littoral region. An interchangeable mission package is embarked on each LCS and provides the primary mission systems in one of these warfare areas. Using an open architecture design, modular weapons, sensor systems and a variety of manned and unmanned vehicles to gain, sustain and exploit littoral maritime supremacy, LCS provides U.S. joint force access to critical areas in multiple theaters.

The LCS class consists of two variants, the Freedom variant and the Independence variant, designed and built by two industry teams. The Freedom variant team is led by Lockheed Martin (for the odd-numbered hulls). The Independence variant team is led by Austal USA (for LCS-6 and the subsequent even-numbered hulls).

Ship sponsor Jill Donnelly christened LCS-17, the future USS Indianapolis, in Navy tradition by breaking a champagne bottle across the ship's bow
Ship sponsor Jill Donnelly christened LCS-17, the future USS Indianapolis, in Navy tradition by breaking a champagne bottle across the ship’s bow

 

Ship Design Specifications

Hull Advanced semiplaning steel monohull
Length Overall 389 feet/118.6 m
Beam Overall 57 feet/17.5 m
Draft 13.5 feet/4.1 m
Full Load Displacement Approximately 3,200 metric tons
Top Speed Greater than 40 knots/46 mph/74 km/h
Range at top speed 1,000 NM/1,151 miles/1,852 km
Range at cruise speed 4,000 NM/4,603 miles/7,408 km
Watercraft Launch and Recovery Up to Sea State 4
Aircraft Launch and Recovery Up to Sea State 5
Propulsion Combined diesel and gas turbine with steerable water jet propulsion
Power 85 MW/113,600 horsepower
Hangar Space Two MH-60 Romeo Helicopters
One MH-60 Romeo Helicopter and three Vertical Take-off and Land Tactical Unmanned Air Vehicles (VTUAVs)
Core Crew Less than 50
Accommodations for 75 sailors provide higher sailor quality of life than current fleet
Integrated Bridge System Fully digital nautical charts are interfaced to ship sensors to support safe ship operation
Core Self-Defense Suite Includes 3D air search radar
Electro-Optical/Infrared (EO/IR) gunfire control system
Rolling-Airframe Missile Launching System
57-mm Main Gun
Mine, Torpedo Detection
Decoy Launching System

 

Freedom-class

Ship Laid down Launched Commissioned Homeport
USS Freedom (LCS-1) 06-02-2005 09-23-2006 11-08-2008 San Diego, California
USS Fort Worth (LCS-3) 07-11-2009 12-07-2010 09-22-2012 San Diego, California
USS Milwaukee (LCS-5) 10-27-2011 12-18-2013 11-21-2015 San Diego, California
USS Detroit (LCS-7) 08-11-2012 10-18-2014 10-22-2016 San Diego, California
USS Little Rock (LCS-9) 06-27-2013 07-18-2015 12-16-2017 San Diego, California
USS Sioux City (LCS-11) 02-19-2014 01-30-2016
USS Wichita (LCS-13) 02-09-2015 09-17-2016
USS Billings (LCS-15) 11-02-2015 07-01-2017
USS Indianapolis (LCS-17) 07-18-2016  04-14-2018
USS St. Louis (LCS-19) 05-17-2017
USS Minneapolis/St. Paul (LCS-21) 02-22-2018
USS Cooperstown (LCS-23)
USS Marinette LCS-25
USS Nantucket (LCS-27)

 

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