The Navy authorized the first cutting of aluminum for the sixth littoral combat ship, the future USS Jackson (LCS 6), at Austal's Modular Manufacturing facility in Mobile, Ala., Aug. 1. The "first cut" is a significant ship construction milestone, signifying the ship's progression from design drawings to the beginning of a tangible form.
"The littoral combat ship is a key part of our future fleet and demands the very best skill and effort from government and industry teams," said Program Executive Officer for Littoral Combat Ships (PEO LCS) Rear Adm. James Murdoch. "The commencement of production of LCS 6 marks another significant milestone in the program, and demonstrates the efficiency benefits of our 'block buy' arrangements with the ship builders. These fixed-price contracts ensure cost efficiency in the program and best value for the taxpayer."
The LCS is an entirely new breed of U.S. Navy warship. A fast, agile, and networked surface combatant, LCS's modular, focused-mission design will provide combatant commanders the required warfighting capabilities and operational flexibility to ensure maritime dominance and access for the joint force. LCS will operate with focused-mission packages that deploy manned and unmanned vehicles to execute missions as assigned by combatant commanders.
PEO LCS, established July 11 and an affiliated program executive office of Naval Sea Systems Command, provides a single program executive responsible for acquiring and maintaining the littoral mission capabilities of the littoral combat ship class, beginning with procurement, and ending with fleet employment and sustainment. PEO LCS designs, delivers and maintains the systems, equipment and weapons necessary for the littoral combat ship warfighter to dominate the littoral battle space and provide U. S. forces with assured access to coastal areas.