On 29 February, the U.S. Navy has christened its newest Freedom-variant littoral combat ship (LCS), the USS Cooperstown (LCS 23), during a CDT ceremony in Marinette, Wisconsin.
According to News4Jax.com, prior to the christening, the Lockheed Martin-led team launched the ship into the water on Jan. 19. The ship is slated to begin sea trials later this year.
“The versatility, speed and lethality of the LCS make it a critical tool to help sailors achieve their missions,” said Joe DePietro, Lockheed Martin vice president of small combatants and ship systems. “Today’s christening brings the USS Cooperstown one step closer to joining a capable fleet of ships supporting Navy missions in a multitude of ways.”
LCS is a modular, reconfigurable ship, designed to meet validated fleet requirements for surface warfare (SUW), anti-submarine warfare (ASW) and mine countermeasures (MCM) missions in the littoral region. Using an open architecture design, modular weapons, sensor systems and a variety of manned and unmanned vehicles to gain, sustain and exploit littoral maritime supremacy, LCS provides the U.S. joint force access to critical areas in multiple theaters.
The LCS class consists of two variants, the Freedom variant and the Independence variant, designed and built by two industry teams. The Freedom-variant team is led by Lockheed Martin in Marinette, Wisconsin, (for the odd-numbered hulls). The Independence-variant team is led by Austal USA in Mobile, Alabama, (for LCS 6 and the subsequent even-numbered hulls).
LCS 23 is the 12th Freedom-variant LCS, the 23rd in the class. She is the first ship named in honor of Cooperstown, New York. Cooperstown received its name on July 25, 2015, during a ceremony at the National Baseball Hall of Fame, which is located in Cooperstown. Her name honors the veterans who are members of the Baseball Hall of Fame located in the namesake city. These 64 men served in conflicts ranging from the Civil War through the Korean War.