Tag Archives: USS Coronado (LCS-4)

Test at RIMPAC

Littoral combat ship USS Coronado (LCS-4) successfully executed the first live-fire over-the-horizon missile test using a Harpoon Block IC missile, July 19, during the Navy’s Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercise.

USS Coronado (LCS-4), an Independence-variant littoral combat ship, launches the first over-the-horizon missile engagement using a Harpoon Block 1C missile (U.S. Navy photo by Lieutenant Bryce Hadley/Released)
USS Coronado (LCS-4), an Independence-variant littoral combat ship, launches the first over-the-horizon missile engagement using a Harpoon Block 1C missile (U.S. Navy photo by Lieutenant Bryce Hadley/Released)

The test event validated the operation of the Harpoon missile aboard a littoral combat ship and provided the necessary engineering data to support future ship upgrades.

«This Harpoon demonstration on USS Coronado supports the Navy’s larger distributed lethality concept to strengthen naval power at and from the sea to ensure the Navy maintains its maritime superiority», said Rear Admiral Jon Hill, program executive officer for Integrated Warfare Systems (PEO IWS).

The Harpoon installation aboard Coronado involved the collaboration of fleet and industry partners, such as ship designers, system design and sustainment experts, and installers to rapidly adapt and install the missile on Coronado.

«The incorporation of an ‘off-the-shelf’ Harpoon missile on USS Coronado in less than four months was no small feat and supports the Chief of Naval Operations’ focus on accelerated learning to bring capabilities to the fleet faster», said Captain Joe Mauser, PEO IWS Harpoon lead.

Harpoon is an all-weather, over-the-horizon weapon designed to execute anti-ship missions against a range of surface targets. It can be launched from surface ships, submarines and aircraft and is currently used on 50 U.S. Navy ships: 22 cruisers, 21 Flight I destroyers and seven Flight II destroyers.

The test is part of a greater strategy by the Navy to increase the lethality and survivability of littoral combat ships, which includes demonstrating and deploying over-the-horizon capability on Coronado and USS Freedom (LCS-1) in the near term.

«With every deployment, LCS is bringing increased capability to the fleet, and USS Coronado is no exception», said Rear Admiral John Neagley, program executive officer for LCS. «The Harpoon demo is yet another example of the power and promise of these warships».

In September 2015, Director of Surface Warfare Rear Adm. Peter Fanta directed the installation of a technologically mature, over-the-horizon capability across in-service littoral combat ships to support the Navy’s distributed lethality concept. Priority was given to Coronado and Freedom as ships preparing to deploy in fiscal year 2016.

In the case of Coronado, an in-service variant of the Harpoon Weapon System (HSLCLS 9/10 and Block 1C missile) was selected as a proven off-the-shelf combat capability.

While this demo represents the first over-the-horizon Harpoon test from an Independence-variant LCS in an operational setting, no decision has been made on which over-the-horizon missile will be integrated into the LCS platform. That will be determined by a future competitive contract award.

RIMPAC is a biennial multinational exercise that provides a unique training opportunity that fosters sustained cooperative relationships critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world’s oceans.

New radar capability

The MQ-8B Fire Scout unmanned helicopter recently deployed with the USS Coronado (LCS-4) to begin flight operations using its new maritime surveillance radar.

An MQ-8B Fire Scout conducts flight operations in preparation for deployment with USS Coronado (LCS-4) in June 2016. The unmanned helicopter deployed with a new search radar that will increase situational awareness for the ship's crew in maritime and littoral environments (U.S. Navy photo)
An MQ-8B Fire Scout conducts flight operations in preparation for deployment with USS Coronado (LCS-4) in June 2016. The unmanned helicopter deployed with a new search radar that will increase situational awareness for the ship’s crew in maritime and littoral environments (U.S. Navy photo)

The AN/ZPY-4(V)1 radar, built by Telephonics Corporation, will be used to improve the situational awareness of the MQ-8B Fire Scout operators and the ship’s crew in maritime and littoral environments. The AN/ZPY-4(V)1 will also improve Fire Scout’s target classification for maritime and overland targets.

Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron Two Three (HSC-23) will operate both the MQ-8B Fire Scout and the MH-60S Seahawk to increase situational awareness and threat warning in a high-traffic littoral environment.

«This air package will significantly improve the Navy’s surface search capabilities for LCS and its action group», said Captain Ben Reynolds, Commodore, HSC Wing Pacific. «The expanded capability will allow our assets to employ an autonomous aircraft off of a naval vessel for search, detection, surveillance, and tracking of maritime surface vessels».

The radar will be used in support of Surface Unit Warfare objectives. It will significantly expand the search area for the ship’s combat team with the ability to simultaneously track up to 150 targets and increase detection accuracies out to 70 nautical miles/80.5 miles/130 km.

«Our overall goal for the first-ever HSC/LCS deployment is to integrate the MQ-8B Fire Scout and MH-60S Seahawk in all available scenarios in order to act as a force multiplier for ships and to function as a vital arm of distributed lethality for the tactical commander», Reynolds said.

«This capability allows the manned/unmanned aviation detachment, working in concert with the LCS and mission package crew, to expand and vastly improve their battle space awareness while building a more detailed common operational picture», he said.

«We continue to evolve into full manned-unmanned teaming by conducting simultaneous missions in the air by determining how best to use MQ-8B and MH-60S for traditional maritime operations», said Captain Jeff Dodge, Fire Scout program manager.

The MQ-8B Fire Scout will also support the U.S. Navy’s biennially RIMPAC exercise this summer while deployed aboard the USS Coronado (LCS-4).

 

Survivability Test

USS Coronado (LCS-4) successfully completed the U.S. Navy’s Total Ship Survivability Trial (TSST) off the coast of California, January 28. During the test event, the crew handled realistic damage simulations, including fire, smoke, electrical failure, flooding, ruptured piping, and structural failure. The scenarios benefited the crew by offering realistic damage control training in preparation for Coronado’s maiden deployment later this year.

Austal’s Trimaran LCS Completes Survivability Test
Austal’s Trimaran LCS Completes Survivability Test

«Initial indications are that Coronado’s performance met, and in multiple cases exceeded, the survivability requirements for this small surface combatant», said Captain Tom Anderson, Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) program manager. «I commend the crew for their exceptional performance and dedication while conducting this important test».

The purpose of the TSST is to evaluate the ship’s systems and procedures following a simulated conventional weapon hit. The primary areas that are evaluated include the ship’s ability to contain and control damage, restore and continue mission capability, and care for personnel casualties. The test is also designed to demonstrate the effectiveness of the survivability features inherent in a ship’s design.

«The experience provided the crew, through realistic scenarios, an appreciation for what it would take to operate following battle damage on board an Independence-variant warship», said Commander Troy A. Fendrick, commanding officer of Coronado. «It also provided Sailors, from the deckplate level, the opportunity to provide critical input to the LCS program office, which will result in the improvement of overall ship survivability».

The TSST, along with the Full Ship Shock Trial scheduled June 2016, is a component of the Live-Fire Test and Evaluation program. Coronado is the second LCS of the Independence-variant built by Austal USA and is homeported in San Diego.

LCS is a modular, reconfigurable ship, with three types of mission packages including surface warfare, mine countermeasures, and anti-submarine warfare. The Program Executive Office Littoral Combat Ships (PEO LCS) is responsible for delivering and sustaining littoral mission capabilities to the fleet. Delivering high-quality warfighting assets while balancing affordability and capability is key to supporting the nation’s maritime strategy.

Six additional Independence-variant LCS are at various stages of construction at Austal’s shipyard in Mobile, Alabama
Six additional Independence-variant LCS are at various stages of construction at Austal’s shipyard in Mobile, Alabama

 

The Independence Variant of the LCS Class

PRINCIPAL DIMENSIONS
Construction Hull and superstructure – aluminium alloy
Length overall 417 feet/127.1 m
Beam overall 103 feet/31.4 m
Hull draft (maximum) 14.8 feet/4.5 m
PAYLOAD AND CAPACITIES
Complement Core Crew – 40
Mission crew – 36
Berthing 76 in a mix of single, double & quad berthing compartments
Maximum mission load 210 tonnes
Mission Bay Volume 118,403 feet3/11,000 m3
Mission packages Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW)
Surface Warfare (SUW)
Mine Warfare (MIW)
PROPULSION
Main engines 2 × GE LM2500
2 × MTU 20V 8000
Waterjets 4 × Wartsila steerable
Bow thruster Retractable azimuthing
PERFORMANCE
Speed 40 knots/46 mph/74 km/h
Range 3,500 NM/4,028 miles/6,482 km
Operational limitation Survival in Sea State 8
MISSION/LOGISTICS DECK
Deck area >21,527.8 feet2/2,000 m2
Launch and recovery Twin boom extending crane
Loading Side ramp
Internal elevator to hanger
Launch/Recover Watercraft Sea State 4
FLIGHT DECK AND HANGER
Flight deck dimensions 2 × SH-60 or 1 × CH-53 or multiple Unmanned Aerial Vehicles/Vertical Take-off and Land Tactical Unmanned Air Vehicles (UAVs/VTUAVs)
Hanger Aircraft stowage & maintenance for 2 × SH-60
Launch/Recover Aircraft Sea State 5
WEAPONS AND SENSORS
Standard 1 × 57-mm gun
4 × 12.7-mm/.50 caliber guns
1 × Surface-to-Air Missile (SAM) launcher
3 × weapons modules
The Independence variant team is led by Austal USA (for LCS-6 and the subsequent even-numbered hulls) and was originally led by General Dynamics, Bath Iron Works (LCS-2 and LCS-4)
The Independence variant team is led by Austal USA (for LCS-6 and the subsequent even-numbered hulls) and was originally led by General Dynamics, Bath Iron Works (LCS-2 and LCS-4)

 

Independence-class

Ship Laid down Launched Commissioned Homeport
USS Independence (LCS-2) 01-19-2006 04-26-2008 01-16-2010 San Diego, California
USS Coronado (LCS-4) 12-17-2009 01-14-2012 04-05-2014 San Diego, California
USS Jackson (LCS-6) 08-01-2011 12-14-2013 12-05-2015 San Diego, California
USS Montgomery (LCS-8) 06-25-2013 08-06-2014
USS Gabrielle Giffords (LCS-10) 04-16-2014 02-25-2015
USS Omaha (LCS-12) 02-18-2015 11-20-2015
USS Manchester (LCS-14) 06-29-2015
USS Tulsa (LCS-16) 01-11-2016
USS Charleston (LCS-18)
USS Cincinnati (LCS-20)
USS Kansas City (LCS-22)
USS Oakland (LCS-24)
Launch of USS Omaha (LCS 12) at Austal USA facility - Mobile, Alabama
Launch of USS Omaha (LCS 12) at Austal USA facility – Mobile, Alabama