Home » Budget Industry » Navy Testing Norwegian Naval Strike Missile on LCS Next Week

Navy Testing Norwegian Naval Strike Missile on LCS Next Week

USS Coronado (LCS-4) underway in the Pacific Ocean on April 23, 2014. US Navy Photo

USS Coronado (LCS-4) underway in the Pacific Ocean on April 23, 2014. US Navy Photo

Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) is set to strap a Norwegian anti-ship missile to the deck of an Independence-class Littoral Combat Ship in an exploration of boosting the firepower of the LCS hulls.

Next week, USS Coronado (LCS-4) will test fire a Kongsberg Naval Strike Missile off the coast of Southern California at the target ranges at Port Hueneme.

“This demonstration is intended to test the capabilities of the Norwegian-made missile from a sea-based platform against a Mobile Ship Target (MST) and provide insights into the weapon’s stated capabilities of increased range and lethality,” according to a Thursday release from NAVSEA.

The NSM made a splash at the 2014 Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercise when Norwegian frigate HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen (F-310) bullseyed the former U.S. amphibious warship Ogden (LPD-5) during demonstration.

The subsonic NSM has a range more than 100 nautical miles designed to evade radar and has greater range than the Navy’s current 1980s era Harpoon missile anti-ship missile.

The early reviews were positive and bolstered the planned testing regime aboard Coronado.

“I’m very excited about [the test], and if it’s as simple to use as the Norwegians tell me it is, then that’s even better,” U.S. Pacific Fleet commander Adm. Harry Harris told Jane’s Defence Weekly.
“The combination of those kinds of missiles, plus the gun that we have, I think, makes LCS a very interesting platform.”

NAVSEA told USNI News on Friday the test of the missile was not necessarily the start of a new acquisition program for the LCS Surface Warfare package or had a direct relation to the completed — but yet unrevealed — Small Surface Combatant (SSC) study.

“The Navy views as an opportunity to test a future warfighting capability,” NAVSEA spokesman Matthew Leonard told USNI News on Friday.
“There is currently no requirement for this capability.”

Currently, the SuW package for LCS is oriented toward asymmetric swarm boat threat as opposed to taking on a peer competitor.

Earlier this year, the Navy announced it would use a modified version of Lockheed Martin’s Longbow Hellfire AGM-114L for early increments of the SuW package.

“We have these 10,000 [Longbow] missiles, there’s no cost risk at all, it’s vertically launchable and you can shoot lots of them at same time and you don’t have to do that thing where you keep the laser on it,” former program manager for LCS Mission Modules (PMS 420), Rear Adm. John Ailes told USNI News in April.

NAVSEA had previously planned to compete the follow-on missile in Fiscal Year (FY) 2019.

The test of the NSM is scheduled for Sept. 24.

“We’re excited to see what potential the missile has as a possible future warfighting tool for the U.S. Navy,” said Rear Adm. Jon Hill, Program Executive Officer, Integrated Warfare Systems (IWS) in the statement.

  • Chesapeakeguy

    We don’t even have suitable American-made missiles to put on this boondoggle!

    • 2IDSGT

      Wester anti-ship technology has badly atrophied across the board. Even the NSM is pretty weak sauce compared to what the Russians/Chinese/Indians can put to sea.

      • Pat Patterson

        I don’t understand why we aren’t pursuing supersonic anti-ship missiles; were still stuck on low speed cruise missiles or trying to be fancy and stealthy. We did have the ramjet powered Talos with a 100 nautical mile range. Supersonic missiles tend to be large weapons to get enough range. A supersonic sized Tomahawk certainly would not have 1000 mile range.

        • 2IDSGT

          You kinda answered your own question there.

          Missiles can be light, fast, or carry a large warhead… but they can only be two of the three.

      • Chesapeakeguy

        You make my point!

      • James Bowen

        When considering missiles, it was never very good to begin with. Anti-ship missiles were first used in combat in 1967. They were developed by the Soviets and they had been around for a number of years before that, but it was only then that the U.S. Navy took notice. Ten years later we deployed the Harpoon, but at Mach 0.8 with a 500-pound warhead it was and is a joke compared to the supersonic, 1000-2000 pound warheaded SS-N-19. The Tomahawk anti-ship missile was deployed soon after. It had a decent warhead but no speed, and we don’t even have them any more.

        Bottom line: we obviously don’t take anti-ship missiles seriously, at least for offensive purposes. I can’t figure out why that is, but we don’t.

        • USNVO

          Yeah. just like the Gabrial was a Joke compared to those huge Styx missiles that had both more range and bigger warheads, and were combat proven to boot. The Boats of Cherbourg didn’t have a chance in 1973… Oh wait, never mind.

    • Pat Patterson

      I’d take the Norwegian missile right now since it’s tested and already in production and more modern than the Harpoon.

  • 2IDSGT

    Damn… that idea took-off faster than I expected.

  • Secundius

    Unfortunately, the wrong choice of word’s or poor syntax structuring.

  • NavySubNuke

    Anything to give the little crappy ship some teeth.

  • James Bowen

    I don’t understand why we aren’t interested in developing and deploying super-sonic anti-ship missiles with large warheads like the SS-N-19 Shipwreck.

  • Secundius

    One rumor says, that as many as Sixty-SSM, are to be carried aboard the ~24 LCS classes of ship’s. If these are those missiles, that’s a lot of teeth!!! Especially with ranges of over 100nm, or 115sm, or 185.2km.

  • Chesapeakeguy

    Well, for what it’s worth, ‘littorals’ suggest confined bodies of water, and congested ones at that. Threats might pop up from anywhere. The crews are going to have to be able to distinguish friendly/neutral shipping from hostiles, and do so instantly. Encounters with bad guys might be within eye-sight. So, to me, they ought to be putting more guns on these ships. The 5-inch gun with an extended-range guided shell makes all the sense in the world, as well as smaller calibers like the 76 MM that can shoot accurately and quickly. Long range missiles are nice, but do the more likely scenarios that these ships will find themselves in warrant long range being a consideration? Don’t get me wrong, anti-ship missiles should be carried on the LCS. But should a range difference among candidate missiles of, say, 50 miles (or more) be a deciding factor?

    Thoughts and comments anyone?

  • disqus_zommBwspv9

    Ashville PG’s mounted missles back in my day