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General Dynamics Mission Systems (GDMS) announced on 26 September that it has integrated a new over-the-horizon (OTH) missile capability onto the US Navy’s INDEPENDENCE variant Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), in support of a Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) mandate to increase LCS lethality and survivability.

The integration of the MK 87 Mod 0 OTH Naval Strike Missile (NSM) aboard the USS GABRIELLE GIFFORDS (LCS 10) strengthens the ship’s mission readiness and defensive capabilities. GDMS was able to integrate the NSM system by determining equipment placement, adapting the ship’s navigation system to provide unique signals to the missile system, designing the operational station in the Integrated Command Center, designing the system for providing specialised power to the MK 87 and conducting all analyses necessary for a safe and effective system. The GD team, including Austal USA, designed structures and foundations and accomplished the installation in San Dieg.

The open-architecture design of the ship’s computing environment and electronic systems made the design and integration of the new NSM system feasible in an accelerated timeline,” commented GDMS Vice President and General Manager of Maritime and Strategic Systems, Carlo Zaffanella.

The NSM, produced by Kongsberg and managed in the US by Raytheon, is a long-range, precision-strike weapon that can find and destroy enemy ships at distances up to 100 nautical miles.

General Dynamics is the systems integrator for the INDEPENDENCE variant of the LCS and will serve as prime contractor for installation and integration of the NSM on all examples of the variant currently in service. LCS ships are designed to be agile, mission-focused platforms capable of operating in near-shore and open-ocean environments. They are designed to defeat asymmetric anti-access threats such as mines, quiet diesel submarines and fast surface craft.

LCS 10 is the first of the INDEPENDENCE variant LCS to receive the NSM OTH missile capability. (Photo: General Dynamics)

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