LCS Modules: $23.4M to Support First 3 WLD-1 USVs
Lockheed Martin Maritime Systems and Sensors Electronics Park in Syracuse, NY received a not-to-exceed $23.4 million cost-plus-fixed-fee and firm-fixed-price modification under previously awarded letter contract (N00024-05-C-6237) as part of the remote minehunting system (RMS) program. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, DC is exercising an option for production of three installation and checkout (INCO) kits and supporting equipment and engineering services for 3 remote minehunting vehicle (RMV) units. Lockheed will also overhaul the first 2 remote minehunting engineering development models (RMS EDMs), which have already been produced. Work will be performed in Syracuse, NY (60%), and Riviera Beach, Fla. (40%), and is expected to be completed by August 2007.
Of course, this effort is part of a larger contract set…
The Remote Minehunting System leverages the AN/WLD-1v1, a high-endurance, remotely controlled, off-board, hard to detect, snorkeling USV (Unmanned Surface Vehicle). It will be used for mine reconnaissance, using its own sensors and maneuvering power in conjunction with the AN/AQS-20A towed array sonar to detect and classify objects in that are moored or set on the seabed. Adding a USV option for this role helps to provide more comprehensive shallow water coverage, without requiring purpose-built minesweeper ships or placing large and expensive ships at risk.
This combination would also be useful for submarine detection, and the RMS was originally slated to serve in that role as well. Deployment aboard Arleigh Burke Class destroyers DDG 91 through DDG 96 would accompany their integration into ASW and MW mission modules, but the WLD-1/AQS-20A combination will now be confined to the USA’s LCS mine warfare mission module.
Dec 18/09: Gannett’s Navy Times reports that Remote Mine-hunting System WLD-1/ AN/AQS-20 sonar combination would rise 85.3% from its original estimate and cost about $22.4 million per copy, while the RMMV/WLD-1 by itself could rise by 52% to $12.7 million per copy. The main instigator for the cost spikes is the Navy’s decision to halve production from 108 to 54 units, by deleting the RMS from the Littoral Combat Ship’s anti-submarine package, and confining it to the mine warfare module. The Navy has also decided not to deploy the RMS combination from DDG-51 Arleigh Burke Class destroyers, and confine the set to its Littoral Combat Ships.
The second issue with cost increases involves reported reliability issues with the WLD-1. The USV reportedly met 8 of 9 major goals, and the Navy is currently looking into the data to review resolution options and progress.
Jan 14/08: Lockheed Martin announces that it “recently” delivered the third production WLD-1 Remote Multi-Mission Vehicle (RMMV) to the U.S. Navy. The first and second RMMV were delivered to the Navy in April and August 2007, respectively.
- DID FOCUS: Airborne Mine Counter-Measures (AMCM)
- Lockheed Martin – Remote Minehunting System (RMS)
- US Navy (May 1/07) – Navy’s Newest Mine Warfare Technology Being Tested at Ingleside