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Surface Navy 2022: US Navy looks to address stability issues with LCS ASW mission module

The US Navy (USN) hopes to get through equipment redesign testing to address hydrodynamic stability issues with anti-submarine warfare (ASW) Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) mission module equipment and return to overall module testing by May, according to Captain Godfrey Weekes, LCS mission module programme manager.

The navy identified instability problems with the tow body during testing, Capt Weekes said on 11 January, at the Surface Navy Association National Symposium, which started the same day in Arlington, Virginia.

“We were unable to overcome the hydrodynamic instability with passive controls, using bigger fins or [by] lowering them,” Capt Weekes noted.

They determined they would need “active control”, he said, adding that addressing the hydrodynamic instability issues was a “high priority”.

Changes required to stabilise the system would be rolled into the first production unit at no additional cost, he added.

While conducting developmental testing during the final quarter of 2021, he said, the USN noticed that while the equipment was being controlled passively, there was a “phenomenon” affecting the tow body and array.

The navy and contractor Raytheon worked together to resolve the issue, he said. The team is expected to test equipment fixes till the end of January, Capt Weekes added.

“Once we come through the hydrodynamic issue, we'll get back to formal [overall mission module] tests,” he said.

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