Martin and Fincantieri Marinette Marine successfully completed acceptance trials on the future USS Little Rock (LCS 9), on Aug. 25.
The future USS Little Rock, the fifth Freedom-variant LCS built by Lockheed Martin and Fincantieri Marinette Marine, completed acceptance trials with the highest score of any Freedom-variant LCS to date, earning the right to fly brooms atop its mast signifying a clean sweep of the ship's sea trials.
"Our team has raised the bar for Freedom-variant Littoral Combat Ship performance," said Joe DePietro, vice president of small surface combatants and ship systems. "This was an exceptional trial – the best of the class to date, thanks to the extraordinary contributions of all Freedom-variant LCS teammates."
The five-day trials, conducted in port and at sea by the U.S. Navy's Board of Inspection and Survey (INSURV), represent the last major milestone before the ship's delivery. During the trials, the Navy conducted comprehensive tests of the LCS intended to demonstrate the performance of the propulsion plant, ship handling, and auxiliary systems.
"I am extremely proud of our entire LCS team, including our shipbuilders at Fincantieri Marinette Marine, for producing our team's best ship to date," said Jan Allman, Fincantieri Marinette Marine President and CEO. "These are complex vessels, and it takes a strong team effort to design, build and test these American warships."
Lockheed Martin and Fincantieri Marinette Marine are now preparing Little Rock for delivery in the coming weeks. Named in honor of the patriotic and hardworking citizens of Little Rock, LCS 9 will be the second U.S. Navy ship to bear the name of Arkansas' largest city. She will be commissioned next to her decommissioned namesake in Buffalo later this year.
The Lockheed Martin and Fincantieri Marinette Marine team is currently in full-rate production of the Freedom-variant of the LCS, and has delivered four ships to the U.S. Navy to date. The future USS Little Rock is one of eight ships in various stages of construction at Fincantieri Marinette Marine, with one more in long-lead production.
The Freedom-variant LCS team is comprised of Lockheed Martin, shipbuilder Fincantieri Marinette Marine, naval architect Gibbs & Cox, and more than 800 suppliers in 42 states.
The Freedom-variant's steel monohull design is based on a proven, resilient design recognized for its stability and reliability.