Newest naval littoral combat ship to be christened LCS Billings

MARINETTE, Wis. The U.S. Navy will christen its newest Freedom-variant littoral combat ship (LCS), USS Billings (LCS 15), during a July 1 ceremony in Marinette, Wisconsin, the home of shipbuilder Fincantieri Marinette Marine. The future USS Billings, the name of which honors the largest city in Montana, will be the first ship bearing that name in naval service.

Each LCS carries a single mission package made up of mission modules containing warfighting systems and support equipment. A dedicated ship crew will work from the ship together with aviation assets to deploy manned and unmanned vehicles and sensors in support of mine countermeasures, antisubmarine warfare operations, and surface warfare missions.

LCS 15 is 389 feet long, has a top speed of greater than 40 knots, and is equipped with such self-defense tools as 3-D air search , rolling airframe missile, medium caliber 57-mm Mk 110 deck gun, electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) gunfire control system, and decoy launching system. After the future USS Billings completes  sea trials, she will be delivered to the U.S. Navy and prepare for commissioning.

--Freedom variant. Photo: U.S. Navy

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