Home » Aviation » Video: USS Detroit Destroys UAV in Deck Gun Test


Video: USS Detroit Destroys UAV in Deck Gun Test

The following is a U.S. Navy video of USS Detroit (LCS-7) firing its 57 mm gun in a series of tests that sank an inbound surface target and destroyed an unmanned aerial vehicle on March 6 and 7, 2017. 

  • Duane

    Terrific gun, extremely well proven over decades of service in numerous navies and our US Navy and Coast Guard, very high rate of fire (220 rpm), excellent advanced tech fire control, either auto or manually targeted. The ammo is also very high tech, designed specifically to do what we see here in this video.

    We need the LCS on station in the Persian Gulf pronto.

    • Corporatski Kittenbot 2.0

      The shallow confines of the Persian gulf are exactly what the LCS is supposed to thrive….. but alas none have ever been there.

      Maybe in the next decade one might be involved in a combat mission.

      • Duane

        A lot sooner than that. As soon as the SuW mission module is declared IOC (later this year)we’ll see deployments to the Persian Gulf beginning, with forward deployed vessels being situated in the region. We already have forward deployed LCS in the SCS, another very hot area of the littorals (forward deployed to Singapore – we have one LCS there now, planning for four LCS eventually).

  • pcb123

    Good. Now go use it on the Iranians.

  • USNVO

    I am curious what type of ammunition was used. One of the justifications about not installing the 57mm on the DDG-1000 and instead using the 30mm found on the LPD-17 and the LCS ASuW package was that the effectiveness of the ammunition was oversold, specifically for targets like these.

    • Duane

      The Bofors (BAE) Mark 110 57mm gun uses several types of munitions. One type of munition possibly used in this video would be the Mk295 “Rapid Kill of Attack Craft” shell. This is a self-guided shell with flip-out guidance canards (vanes) with a multi-mode imaging seeker (uses a laser designator and an autonomous seeker) set to detonate with a proximity fuse. On detonation 1.4 kg of steel fragments take out a boat or an aircraft and its occupants – as shown in this video. The seeker is said to be accurate within 1 m (plenty enough for its proximity fusing). It’s design philosophy is “one shot – one kill”.

      Fusing can also be set for contact or timed detonation. Another shell for the 57mm gun is an unguided pre-fragmented projectile loaded with 8,000 tungsten fragments, again with multiple fusing options, set by the fire control system.

      The gun mount itself uses a electro-optical targeting system with built-in radar ranging, allowing its use in non-visual conditions (fog). The mount is auto-loading, 120 ready rounds, 1,000 rounds inside the gun mount, 220 rounds per minute.

  • Gunny Highway

    Shooting fish in a barrel. Not that impressive!…Try evasive maneuver from the target and your ship at the same time. That is impressive!…

    • Duane

      Piece of cake – the targeting is handled automatically by the fire control system, doesn’t matter what the target or own ship are doing. I’ve seen the video produced last year with a full swarm of unmanned attack boats took on an LCS from multiple points on the compass … and the Bofors laid down a neat line of shell splashes alongside each of the violently maneuvering boats (the intent was not to hit the target but splash it – since these are very expensive craft!).

  • Ctrot

    A ship at dead stop on a calm sea vs a stationary boat and an aircraft flying a perfectly straight / steady course.

    Wow, how impressive.

    • Rexford L

      Ummm, the fire control system on a gun like that is basically “fire and forget” you paint the target, assign it to the gun and, like CIWS will keep the rounds hitting the target till you release the trigger.. (or tell the computer to stop firing)

      • Ctrot

        The 57mm aboard the LCS are optically aimed.

        • Duane

          Not just optically aimed … the Mk 110 gun mount has a self-contained radar ranger, as well as an advanced electro-optical targeting system (i.e., it uses IR emissions as well as visual for use through fog and smoke obscuration, or night fires). Also, the latest munition – the Mk 295 “Rapid Kill of Attack Craft” shell is self-guided with a dual mode seeker. It can be laser guided, using the laser finders mounted on both the MH-60R helicopter and the MQ-8 Sea Scout drone chopper, both carried on board the LCS; or it can use its internal seeker. Plus both types of munitions are equipped with radar proximity fuses, set automatically by the fire control system.

        • MarlineSpikeMate

          Ctrot, it is “aimed” several ways. Learn something before making statements.

        • Ed L

          So is a 3″50′ but I wish we had half a dozen of the 57mm on the gators when I was in

  • Curtis Conway

    All well and good, but a UAV is not a decent simulation of an inbound ASCM, and most particularly a supersonic ASCM.

    • Duane

      So? That’s not the function of the 57mm gun. You’re complaining in effect that a clean kill rifle shot doesn’t prove that your shotgun works. Again, so what?

      The LCS has a different weapons system for ASCMs – the same weapon system used on our nuke carriers and our newest Arleigh Burkes – the SEARAM AMM system.

      • Curtis Conway

        As I understand . . . and most every time I complain about the 25 lb blast fragmentation warhead of the RIM-116 SeaRam’s limited applicability against Anti-Ship Cruise Missiles (ASCMs), particularly supersonic ASCMs, I’m reminded the vessel also possesses guns. There application against such threats do not track exactly with the 40mm Bofors against Japanese A6M Zeros, though a quad mount with new fusing might just do the trick, I don’t think they are coming back.

        The RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile (ESSM) is the minimum tool to use against this nemesis, and a multiple shot defense in depth makes for a more successful engagement. The RISK being placed upon our sailors in this modern battle space full of TBMs and ASCMs is too great (e.g., new frigate design).

        The new BAE Systems ORKA round would provide greater lethality perhaps.

      • Curtis Conway

        Then why the demonstration in the first place?

        • Duane

          This particular demonstration is what every LCS crew will do as part of its preparations for deployment. Just as every other ship in the history of naval guns, going back to the ancient days of sail and the invention of naval guns, has tested its guns in preparation for combat.

          This was not claimed to be some new capability … the Navy didn’t even claim which round was used, but I rather suspect it was the recently developed, precision guided “one shot, one kill” munition that came into service less than two years ago, as provided by BAE. The round has pop-out guide fins and can be guided either by laser designation – coming from either of the MH-60R helicopter or the MQ-8 drone – or by its self-contained FLIR sensor. It is precise to within 1 meter, and contains a tri-mode fuse that most often will be selected electronically by the gun FCS to “proximity”. It explodes and sends 3 pounds of steel fragments – enough to obliterate any small boat or UAV as clearly shown in the video.

          • Curtis Conway

            I’m familiar with the technology, being an old Standard Missile Troop. I’m also familiar with claims that the gun was present as a potential remedy for missile attack, which is a weak and high-risk response at that. When dealing with a killer telephone pole (supersonic ASCM) coming at you at Mach 3+, I will not be relying on the gun, nor will I accept the only solution being a 25 lb blast fragmentation warhead coming out of something that will get ONE SHOT just inside 5 miles (SeaRAM).

          • Duane

            The best defenses are always multi-layered with redundancy. I don’t know if the Mk 110 gun is ever intended as anti-missile defense, though I suppose it could be dragooned into that role with the right munition and FCS. The principal anti-missile defense on the LCS is the SEARAM launcher, which has a lot more than one shot in it (11, to be precise).

            The size of the munition is really not an issue – 25 pounds is much larger than the 57mm fires (13 pounds). The idea is to match the fragmentation design to the requirements to down an incoming ASCM. The fusing is not an issue – it’s already got a radar proximity fuse which is what is used in all anti-missile and anti-aircraft rounds that don’t depend solely on kinetic HTK munitions. Seeker on the latest precision guided round is possibly up to snuff, given that it gives 1 meter precision (plenty good enough for a proximity fuse).

            So such a capability may be in the works eventually for the 57mm gun. But not yet.

          • Curtis Conway

            It matters not how many missiles are in the magazine when dealing with a Supersonic ASCM inbound to you (CBDR) at 50′ altitude traveling at Mach 3+ . . . you only get one shot with the missile. The gun should probably be fired constantly immediately after launch . . . then you pray. Been there, done that.

          • Duane

            I think it certainly does matter how many … if an inbound ASCM is headed for your ship, you don’t fire just a single RIM-116 (after all, it might not work) – If I were CO I’d fire at least two RIM-116s, with perhaps a few seconds between shots, while also getting the guns ready to fire. There is nothing like redundancy while the lives of your command are at imminent risk.

          • Curtis Conway

            Those who survive in combat plan for the worse and hope for the best. May you never be attacked by more than one supersonic telephone pole at once with a Time-on-top.

  • Corporatski Kittenbot 2.0

    That drone looked like it had all the speed & maneuverability of a hot air balloon & the cheers are like the US won the world cup.

    low expectations I guess.

  • BlueSky47

    Oh how pathetic, the crew getting a hard-on after shooting down a tiny, slow, UAV on a programed course and speed. Somehow I don’t think the Chinese are going to sending drones, nor rubber boats, against the little crappy ship, they’ll be sending Mach 5 missiles, and lot’s of them at the same time…

    • Marjus Plaku

      yeah i mean that gun test seems more like a proof of concept test than anything resembling real world conditions. if the LCS was true to its name it would have been operating in the position and capacity that the USS Mason was when it has missiles shot at it from Yemeni shores. and if the LCS had been there in its place, it would likely have been toast. all two people in the combat operations center might not have gotten a proper warning from their little toy radar mechanically rotating and its second tier combat system. crew might not have reacted in time with their single self defense system, the rolling air frame missiles. seems like the LCS would pop decoys and increase speed to egress. pathetic for something considered a USN WARSHIP.

      • MarlineSpikeMate

        And a OHP Frigate would be better? Better detection and offensive capabilities?

        • Marjus Plaku

          Well for one the Perry’s are 30 years older and in the USN retired. They were greatly neutered by the end of their service life due to outdated systems which were never upgraded and instead removed/fazed out.

          But since they do serve with other nations, for the sake of argument yes, they would have been better. The radar though old is solid and able to detect objects out to 200 miles while supporting multiple simultaneous engagements at range. And they actually have something called a combat information center with a proper watch staff and the necessary know how and tools to respond since it’s a real warship.

          When the OHPs came out, they were state of the art and boasted the SM-2 for air defense in addition to its many weapons and capabilities against submarines and other surface threats.

          In fact, back then it meant something proud and meaningful to be a Frigateman, and its crews were highly capable and still larger than the standard contingent of today’s LCS. They were the picket ship of the battle group and escorted the large combatants and carriers. More than you can say about the LCS. So they punched above their weight for sure.
          A long range anti air missile, harpoons, Phalanx, 3 inch deck gun, torpedoes, helicopters, sonar and towed array, combined with a good search and engagement radar system as well as passive and active countermeasures against surface and subsurface threats is nothing to sneeze at.

          And given that the Perry class has actually been in war and sustained damage and survived, thus proven itself, also in sinkexs as well since then, I’d much rather be inside of them than the flimsy LCS.

          A new proper Frigate is overdue. Besides the capability of the platform and ship class which is sorely needed, we must regain the tradition of the Frigate and Frigateman. Hopefully it will help to cultivate and revive the skill and pride and seamanship that too many of today’s surface sailors (at all ranks) are lacking and unaware of.

          • MarlineSpikeMate

            SPS-49 is not nearly as capable as the TRS-3D in tracking missiles and aircraft threats, especially when it comes to the integration with Combats 21, which is superior to the MK92 FCS on multiple levels. RAM has a greater kill probability than Phalanx. The MK110 55mm with its pre-programable ammunition is far more capable for a multitude of threats than the 76mm and again, tied in much better the Combats 21 than the OHP ever had.
            If you ever stood bridge watch on a legacy ship, it is very easy to see that sometimes you really just need 3 experienced personal, not 10. Same with combat operations. In fact, sometimes this leads to a faster more functional CIC and BRM than just throwing more people at it. LCS is being fitted with OTH missiles and short range missile, something the OHP lost a long time ago.
            I love the OHPs, and think they could have been upgraded to be awesome ships, but the dump truck modularity, 15ft draft, and openness for any kind of architecture is something the OHP would never have had.
            I responded to your assertion that the LCS had to compare to the USS Mason, which is absurd.

          • Marjus Plaku

            Look I appreciate your knowledge and input but I am still not convinced that the LCS could have successfully fended off an attack like the one on the Mason and continued to operate in the area.

            Why is my assertion absurd? Was the Mason not in the ‘littorals’ aka close to shore? Does the LCS expect to operate only close to shores where there is no serious enemy missile threat? If so then it cannot be considered a warship and what is the purpose of having it or what is its mission? Because right now it looks to me like we still need a DDG to do the job it was allegedly created for, ie. monitoring and patrolling close to shore etc… judging by the Navy not trusting it with any serious tasking/missions so far.

  • Ed L

    We used to do shoots like this all the time using our old 3″ 50′ twin mount in local control. Once we got to shoot against a old F-102 scooting 400 knots in front of us. I think we nicked it with one or two rounds of VT Frag out of 20 rounds.

  • Bofors 57mm…not a bad gun!!…shoots a little slow.

  • Ron8200

    The surface target didn’t have a wake? The UAV coming in slow and steady I hope we have better tests then those.