Lockheed Martin Team Delivers LCS 3 Two Months Ahead of Schedule

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The Lockheed Martin team building the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Freedom variant learned its lessons well.

Using lessons learned from building the United States’ first LCS, the USS Freedom, the team needed 30 percent fewer production hours to build its second ship, the Fort Worth, before delivering it in June to the Navy on budget and two months ahead of schedule.

The team used its experience in building and maintaining the first-in-class Freedom to decrease costs and improve efficiency on Fort Worth. As with other new ship classes, some minor design changes were made to Fort Worth, including increasing fuel capacity 10 percent by lengthening the hull, altering the bridge windows for enhanced visibility and adding corrosion control techniques.

“Going forward, we intend to remain on schedule and on cost, while we continue incorporating lessons learned and drive down costs,” Joe North, vice president of Littoral Ship Systems for Lockheed Martin.

The Fort Worth will remain at the Marinette Marine shipyard as the crew becomes familiar with the ship before transiting through the Great Lakes and down the East Coast on its way to a September commissioning in Texas.

Since being deployed two years early in 2010, Freedom has sailed more than 58,000 nautical miles. Construction of the team’s next two LCSs – the Milwaukee (LCS 5) and Detroit (LCS 7) – is underway. Contracts for Little Rock (LCS 9) and Sioux City (LCS 11) were awarded in March.

The Lockheed Martin team includes shipbuilder Marinette Marine and naval architect Gibbs & Cox, as well as domestic and international suppliers.

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