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Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Program: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress

Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Program: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress

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Published by Chuck Achberger
Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Program: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress
Ronald O'Rourke Specialist in Naval Affairs March 18, 2011

Congressional Research Service 7-5700 www.crs.gov RL33741

CRS Report for Congress
Prepared for Members and Committees of Congress

Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Program

Summary
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 o
Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Program: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress
Ronald O'Rourke Specialist in Naval Affairs March 18, 2011

Congressional Research Service 7-5700 www.crs.gov RL33741

CRS Report for Congress
Prepared for Members and Committees of Congress

Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Program

Summary
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 o

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Published by: Chuck Achberger on Jul 13, 2011
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CRS Report for Congress
Prepared for Members and Committees of Congress
Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Program:Background, Issues, and Options for Congress
Ronald O'Rourke
Specialist in Naval AffairsMarch 18, 2011
Congressional Research Service
7-5700www.crs.govRL33741
 
Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) ProgramCongressional Research Service
Summary
The Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) is a relatively inexpensive Navy surface combatant equippedwith modular “plug-and-fight” mission packages. The Navy wants to field a force of 55 LCSs.The first two LCSs (LCS-1 and LCS-2) were procured in FY2005 and FY2006 and werecommissioned into service on November 8, 2008, and January 16, 2010. Another two (LCS-3 andLCS-4) were procured in FY2009 and are under construction. Two more (LCS-5 and LCS-6)were procured in FY2010 and are under contract. The Navy’s proposed FY2011 budget requestedfunding to procure an additional two (LCS-7 and LCS-8). Although the Navy’s FY2011 fundinghas not yet been fully determined, the Navy announced on March 17 that it had brought these twoships under contract. The Navy’s proposed FY2012 budget requests funding to procure four more(LCSs 9 through 12). Navy plans call for procuring an additional 15 LCSs in FY2013-FY2016 inannual quantities of 4-4-4-3.There are two very different LCS designs—one developed and produced by an industry team ledby Lockheed, and another developed and produced by an industry team led by General Dynamics.The Lockheed design is built at the Marinette Marine shipyard at Marinette, WI; the GeneralDynamics design is built at the Austal USA shipyard at Mobile, AL.On November 3, 2010, the Navy notified congressional offices that it was prepared to implementa dual-award acquisition strategy under which the Navy would award each LCS builder a 10-shipcontract for the six-year period FY2010-FY2015. The Navy stated that, compared to an earlierdown select strategy that the Navy had announced in September 2009, the dual-award strategywould reduce LCS procurement costs by hundreds of millions of dollars. The Navy neededadditional legislative authority from Congress to implement the dual-award strategy. Congressgranted the authority in Section 150 of H.R. 3082/P.L. 111-322 of December 22, 2010, an act that,among other things, funded federal government operations through March 4, 2011. On December29, 2010, the Navy implemented the dual-award strategy, awarding a 10-ship, fixed-priceincentive (FPI) block-buy contract to Lockheed, and another 10-ship, FPI block-buy contract toAustal USA. LCSs 5 through 8 are the first four LCSs executed under the two block-buycontracts.Current issues for Congress concerning the LCS program include changes or potential changes tothe composition of LCS mission modules announced by the Navy in January 2011, the combatsurvivability of the LCS, and hull cracking on LCS-1.
 
Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) ProgramCongressional Research Service
Contents
Introduction................................................................................................................................1
 
Background................................................................................................................................1
 
The Program in General........................................................................................................1
 
The LCS in Brief.............................................................................................................1
 
Planned Procurement Quantities......................................................................................2
 
Two LCS Designs...........................................................................................................2
 
Two LCS Shipyards........................................................................................................4
 
Unit Procurement Cost Cap.............................................................................................5
 
Estimated Procurement Costs for 55 LCS Sea Frames.....................................................6
 
Manning and Deployment Concept.................................................................................6
 
Major Program Developments...............................................................................................6
 
Growth in Sea Frame Procurement Costs........................................................................6
 
2007 Program Restructuring and Ship Cancellations.......................................................7
 
2009 Down Select Acquisition Strategy (Not Implemented)............................................7
 
2010 Dual-Award Acquisition Strategy (Implemented)....................................................8
 
2011 Announced Changes in Mission Module Equipment...............................................9
 
FY2011 Funding Request....................................................................................................11
 
FY2012 Funding Request....................................................................................................12
 
Issues for Congress...................................................................................................................12
 
Announced Changes in Mission Module Equipment............................................................12
 
Combat Survivability..........................................................................................................12
 
Hull Cracking on LCS-1.....................................................................................................14
 
Technical Risk....................................................................................................................15
 
Sea Frame.....................................................................................................................15
 
Mission Packages..........................................................................................................16
 
Total Program Acquisition Cost...........................................................................................20
 
Operation and Support (O&S) Cost.....................................................................................20
 
Operational Concepts..........................................................................................................21
 
Legislative Activity for FY2012................................................................................................22
 
FY2012 Funding Request....................................................................................................22
 
Figures
Figure 1. Lockheed LCS Design (Top) and General Dynamics LCS Design (Bottom)..................3
 
Tables
Table 1. Construction Status of LCSs..........................................................................................5
 
Table A-1. Congressional Action (Other Than Continuing Resoolutions) on FY2011Funding Request....................................................................................................................25
 
Table D-1. Status of LCSs Funded in FY2005-FY2009.............................................................40
 

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