Thursday, June 25, 2015

U.S. Navy Littoral Ship Found Vulnerable to Attack - Bloomberg Business

U.S. Navy Littoral Ship Found Vulnerable to Attack - Bloomberg Business: Weeks before one of the U.S. Navy’s new Littoral Combat Ships departed for Asia, tests had exposed its vulnerability to a potential enemy attack, according to the Pentagon’s testing office.

A “total ship survivability test” of the USS Fort Worth conducted off of Southern California in October “highlighted the existence of significant vulnerabilities” in the design of vessels built by Lockheed Martin Corp., according to Michael Gilmore, the Pentagon’s director of combat testing.

“Much of the ship’s mission capability was lost because of damage caused” by the simulated effects of a weapons attack and a hypothetical fire that followed, Gilmore said in an assessment for Congress obtained by Bloomberg News.

While the Fort Worth has never been in combat, it had an encounter with a Chinese ship in disputed waters of the South China Sea in May. Gilmore’s report, mandated by lawmakers, may add more congressional scrutiny of Navy budget requests for the Littoral Combat Ship, designed for missions in shallow coastal waters.