Navy issues RFI for what's now Future Guided Missile Frigate

Can we get a VLS with that? Can we get a VLS with that? Austal

JULY 10, 2017 — The U.S. Navy has now released its expected RFI for the next generation of frigates that will succeed the current Littoral Combat Ships (LCS). Now labeled the Future Guided Missile Frigate (FFG(X)), the design looks for quite a lot more capabilities than the current LCS is designed to deliver, including in the area of surface warfare. The RFI states the frigate should possess the ability to robustly defend itself during conduct of independent operations while connected and contributing to the fleet tactical grid.

The RFI doesn't directly specify that the FFG(X) be equipped with a Vertical Launch System (VLS), but asks RFI responders to suggest how one could be incorporated.

Read the RFI HERE

Where does all this position the two shipbuilders producing the current LCS variants?

"Austal USA welcomes the Navy’s FFG(X) RFI," said Austal USA President Craig Perciavalle. "With our hot LCS production line and highly skilled workforce, we are well prepared and very excited for this great opportunity to take the next step into future warfighting by expanding the capabilities of the Independence-variant LCS. We will work hard to provide a highly capable ship that answers the Navy’s future needs for the FFG(X)."

No word yet from the Lockheed Martin LCS team, which produces the Freedom variant LCS.

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