Archive for September, 2008

CV-22 Osprey

September 30, 2008
CV-22 Osprey

CV-22 Osprey

Find the CV-22 Osprey tee-shirt or browse our collection of CV-22 Osprey souvenirs at The Military Chest.
Or visit The PatriArt Gallery and choose the CV-22 Osprey poster, framed art print, 12-month calendar, or greeting card set.

The CV-22 Osprey is a tiltrotor aircraft that combines the vertical takeoff, hover, and vertical landing qualities of a helicopter with the long-range, fuel efficiency and speed characteristics of a turboprop aircraft. Its mission is to conduct long-range infiltration, exfiltration and resupply missions for special operations forces.
Features
This versatile, self-deployable aircraft offers increased speed and range over other rotary-wing aircraft, enabling Air Force Special Operations Command aircrews to execute long-range special operations missions. The CV-22 can perform missions that normally would require both fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft. The CV-22 takes off vertically and, once airborne, the nacelles (engine and prop-rotor group) on each wing can rotate into a forward position

The CV-22 is equipped with integrated threat countermeasures, terrain-following radar, forward-looking infrared sensor, and other advanced avionics systems that allow it to operate at low altitude in adverse weather conditions and medium- to high-threat environments.

Background
The CV-22 is an Air Force-modified version of the U.S. Marine Corps MV-22 Osprey. The first two Air Force test aircraft were delivered to Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., in September 2000, for flight testing. The 58th Special Operations Wing at Kirtland AFB, N.M., began CV-22 aircrew training with the first two production aircraft in August 2006.

The first operational CV-22 was delivered to Air Force Special Operations Command’s 1st Special Operations Wing at Hurlburt Field, Fla., January 2007. Initial operating capability is scheduled for September 2008 with AFSOC’s 8th Special Operations Squadron (8th SOS). A total of 50 CV-22 aircraft are to be delivered by 2015 to equip four operational squadrons (two at Hurlburt Field, Florida, and two at Cannon AFB, New Mexico.) 

General Characteristics

Primary function: Special operations forces long-range infiltration, exfiltration, and resupply
Contractors: Bell Helicopter Textron Inc., and Boeing Company, Defense and Space Group, Helicopter Division
Power Plant: Two Rolls Royce-Allison AE1107C turboshaft engines
Thrust: More than 6,200 shaft horsepower per engine
Wingspan: 84 feet, 7 inches (25.8 meters)
Length: 57 feet, 4 inches (17.4 meters)
Height: 22 feet, 1 inch (6.73 meters)
Rotary Diameter: 38 feet (11.6 meters)
Speed: 277 miles per hour (241 knots) (cruising speed)
Ceiling: 25,000 feet (7,620 meters)
Maximum Vertical Takeoff Weight: 52,870 pounds (23,982 kilograms)
Maximum Rolling Takeoff Weight: 60,500 pounds (27,443 kilograms)
Range: : 2,100 nautical miles with internal auxiliary fuel tanks
Payload: 24 troops (seated), 32 troops (floor loaded) or 10,000 pounds of cargo
Unit cost: $89 million (fiscal 2005 dollars)
Crew: Four (pilot, copilot and two enlisted flight engineers)
Date Deployed: 2006 (with projected initial operational capability in 2009)
Inventory: Air Force Special Operations Command — AFSOC: 5 (operational), 4 (training)

How Jet Bombers Can Thread the Needle

September 30, 2008
Threading the Needle

Threading the Needle

A US Air Force B-1B Lancer bomber threads the needle as it breaks the sound barrier. Find this breathtaking image on framed art prints, posters, and calendar prints at The PatriArt Gallery.

So how does this B-1 Lancer bomber thread the needle?

The Prandtl-Glauert singularity (sometimes referred to as a “vapor cone”), is the point at which a sudden drop in air pressure occurs, and is generally accepted as the cause of the visible condensation cloud that often surrounds an aircraft traveling at transonic speeds, though there remains some debate. It is an example of a mathematical singularity in aerodynamics.

One view of this phenomenon is that it exhibits the effect of compressibility and the so-called “N-wave”. The N-wave is the time variant pressure profile seen by a static observer as a sonic compression wave passes. The overall three-dimensional shock wave is in the form of a cone with its apex at the supersonic aircraft. This wave follows the aircraft. The pressure profile of the wave is composed of a leading compression component (the initial upward stroke of the “N”), followed by a pressure descent forming a rarefaction of the air (the downward diagonal of the “N”), followed by a return to the normal ambient pressure (the final upward stroke of the “N”). The rarefaction may be thought of as the “rebounding” of the compression due to inertial effects.

These condensation clouds, also known as “shock-collars” or “shock eggs,” are frequently seen during Space Shuttle launches around 25 to 33 seconds after launch when the vehicle is traveling at transonic speeds. These effects are also visible in archival footage of some nuclear tests, however they are known as “Wilson chamber clouds”, caused by the hydrodynamic shockwave.

Since heat does not leave the affected air mass, this change of pressure is adiabatic, with an associated change of temperature. In humid air, the drop in temperature in the most rarefied portion of the shock wave (close to the aircraft) can bring the air temperature below its dew point, at which moisture condenses to form a visible cloud of microscopic water droplets. Since the pressure effect of the wave is reduced by its expansion (the same pressure effect is spread over a larger radius), the vapor effect also has a limited radius. Such vapor can also be seen in low pressure regions during high–g subsonic maneuvers in humid conditions.

Prandtl-Glauert singularity effects can be readily observed on a humid day by successfully cracking a whip. A visible cloud is produced at the point where the tip of the whip goes transonic.

Article courtesy Wikipedia

F-14 Tomcat

September 28, 2008
The F-14 Tomcat is a supersonic, twin-engine, variable sweep wing, two-place strike fighter manufactured by Grumman Aircraft Corporation. The multiple tasks of navigation, target acquisition, electronic counter measures (ECM), and weapons employment are divided between the pilot and the radar intercept officer (RIO). Primary missions include precision strike against ground targets, air superiority, and fleet air defense.
 
Features
As a Strike Fighter, the Tomcat is capable of deploying an assortment of air-to-ground ordnance (MK-80 series GP bombs, LGBs and JDAM) in various configurations, while simultaneously carrying the AIM-7, AIM-9 and AIM-54 air-to-air missiles. The F-14 also has the LANTIRN targeting system that allows delivery of various laser-guided bombs for precision strikes in air-to-ground combat missions and for battle damage assessment. With its Fast Tactical Imagery (FTI) system the F-14 can transmit and receive targeting/reconnaissance imagery in-flight to provide time sensitive strike capability. A number of F-14s also carry the Tactical Air Reconnaissance Pod System (TARPS) providing in-theater tactical reconnaissance.
 
Background
The F-14 has completed its decommissioning from the U.S. Navy. It was slated to remain in service through at least 2008, but all F-14A and F-14B airframes have already been retired, and the last two squadrons, the VF-31 Tomcatters and the VF-213 Black Lions, both flying the “D” models, arrived for their last fly-in at Naval Air Station Oceana on March 10, 2006. The F-14 Tomcat was officially retired on September 22, 2006 at Naval Air Station Oceana.
 
General Characteristics
Contractor: Northrop Grumman.
Date Deployed: First flight: December 1970.
Propulsion: F-14A: (2) TF30-414A Afterburning Turbofans with over 40,000 lb Total Thrust
F-14B/D: (2) F110-GE400 Afterburning Turbofans with over 54,000 lb Total Thrust.
Length: 62 feet 9 inches (18.9 meters).
Height: 16 feet (4.8 meters).
Wingspan: 64 feet (19 meters) unswept; 38 feet (11.4 meters) swept.
Weight: 43,600 lb (19,777 kg) (F-14B).
Airspeed: Mach 2+.
Ceiling: 50,000+ feet.
Range: 1600 nautical miles.
Crew: Two (pilot and radar intercept officer).

 

Data courtesy USN

EA-6B Prowler electronic warfare aircraft

September 28, 2008
 

The EA-6B Prowler provides an umbrella of protection for strike aircraft, ground troops and ships by jamming enemy radar, electronic data links and communications.

 
Features
The Prowler is a long-range, all-weather aircraft with advanced electronic countermeasures capability. Manufactured by the Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation, it is a twin-engine, mid-wing configured aircraft that has a side by-side cockpit arrangement. The EA-6B war fighting systems includes the ALQ-99 on board receiver, the ALQ-99 pod mounted jamming system, the USQ-113 communications jamming system and the HARM missile. Two significant upgrades now in development are the Improved Capability (ICAP III) and the Multifunctional Information Distribution System (MIDS). The ICAP III, approved for Low Rate Initial Production in June 2003, upgrades the on board receiving system, providing an accurate threat emitter geo-locator and a selective reactive jamming capability against modern threat systems. The ICAP III upgrade includes new cockpit displays, improved systems connectivity, and improved system reliability. The MIDS upgrade provides the ability to receive and utilize data via the Link 16 tactical data link. The Initial Operational Capabilities are planned for March and November 2005, respectively.
 
Background
The primary mission of the EA-6B Prowler is Suppression of Enemy Air Defenses in support of strike aircraft and ground troops by interrupting enemy electronic activity and obtaining tactical electronic intelligence within the combat area.
 
Service
Navy and Marine Corps

 

General Characteristics
Primary Function: Electronic countermeasures.
Contractor: Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation.
Date Deployed: First Flight: 25 May 1968; Operational Capability: July 1971.
Propulsion: Two Pratt & Whitney J52-P408 engines (10,400 pounds thrust each).
Length: 59 feet 10 inches (17.7 meters).
Height: 16 feet 8 inches (4.9 meters).
Wingspan: 53 feet (15.9 meters).
Weight: Maximum Take Off Gross Weight: 61,500 pounds (27,450 kg).
Airspeed: 500 Kts + (575 mph, 920 kmh).
Ceiling: 37,600 feet.
Range: 1,000 nautical miles+ (1,150 miles, 1,840 km).
Crew: Pilot and three electronic countermeasures officers.

 

Data courtesy USN

DSU Tests New Submarine Rescue System with Chilean Submarine

September 28, 2008
USS Alabama

USS Alabama

USS Alabama ( SSBN 731 ) is an Ohio-Class ballistic missile submarine of the US Navy. SSBN 731 is homeported on Puget Sound at Kitsap Naval Base, Bangor, Washington. Find a poster, framed art print, or 2009 calendar print of USS Alabama (SSBN 731) before the majestic backdrop of Washington state’s Mount Rainier. Visit the PatriArt Gallery today.

The Navy’s Deep Submergence Unit tested a new system known as the submarine rescue diving and recompression system (SRDRS) with the Chilean submarine CS Simpson (SS-21) Sept. 17-18.

The SRDS is designed to be rapidly deployed to any location in the world via air or ground and can be installed on military or commercial vessels when a call for assistance is received. It will replace the de-activated deep submergence rescue vehicle (DSRV) system as the Navy’s premier submarine rescue capability.

“The SRDRS is the U.S. Navy’s 21st century submarine rescue system and represents state-of-the-art technology for submarine rescue systems,” said Lt. Rich Ray, the former engineering officer of the rescue submarine Mystic (DSRV 1).

According to Ray, the SRDRS is designed to be mobilized, installed on a transport vehicle, transported to a site and mated to a distressed submarine to begin rescues within a maximum of 72 hours.

During the exercise, and with operators inside, the pressurized rescue module (PRM) was remotely controlled via a topside control console on board USNS Navajo (T-ATF 169). Next, the PRM descended more than 400 feet to the Chilean submarine CS Simpson (SS-21) and mated with the escape hatch. Once the simulated transfer of personnel was completed, the PRM detached from the submarine and ascended to the surface. The PRM was then recovered from the sea and craned onto a deck cradle installed aboard Navajo.

Upon recovery, the PRM docked with the submarine decompression system (SDS). Personnel were then transferred to the SDS from the PRM via a pressurized flexible man-way to undergo decompression.

“It was an awesome experience to work with the Chilean Navy,” said DSU Machinist’s Mate 2nd Class (SS) Chris Huffstetler. “I believe it is beneficial to work with foreign navies in case something really happens…we can provide immediate support.”

The SRDRS concept of operations has been developed to support rescue of up to 155 personnel from a pressurized disabled submarine. The PRM accommodates 16 rescued personnel per trip and requires two operators and a diving medical technician.

“The operation was a phenomenal success thanks to the cooperation of the entire crew,” said Cmdr. Larry R. Lintz, deputy commander for submarine escape at Commander, Submarine Development Squadron 5. “Now we can officially say, the SRDRS is the Navy’s official submarine rescue system.”

Alexia Riveracorrea (NNS)

Kearsarge Departs Haiti, Resumes Continuing Promise 2008

September 28, 2008
USS Kearsarge

USS Kearsarge

Find the USS Kearsarge (LHD) Expeditionary Strike Group (Kearsarge ESG) as a poster, framed art print or 2009 calendar print at The PatriArt Gallery. Or choose a USS Kearsarge ESG tee-shirt, sweatshirt, or souvenir item from our wide selection at The Military Chest.

USS Kearsarge (LHD 3) departed Haiti Sept. 26 after completing a 19-day disaster relief mission in the storm-ravaged Caribbean nation.

The mission included robust helicopter and sealift support to U.S. relief efforts led by the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA).

During its support to USAID-led relief efforts in Haiti, Marine and Navy helicopters embarked aboard Kearsarge flew more than 100 sorties and the landing craft transported more than 30 loads of supplies. These operations led to the timely delivery of more than 3.3 million lbs. of food, water, and other relief supplies to Haitian communities devastated in recent weeks by several tropical storms and Hurricane Ike.

A team of medical personnel conducted health assessments at 16 villages thorughout the affected area and provided basic medical care to more than 1,000 Haitian citizens. Doctors from the ship performed health examinations, looking for diseases inherent to natural disasters, and conducted preventive services, such as environmental assessments.

Prior to her departure, Kearsarge medical personnel delivered their assessments to the various agencies assisting here to ensure a seamless transition of the ship’s aid distribution activities to other relief organizations in Haiti.

“All of the information we gathered was in areas where the government and other agencies assisting with the relief effort here had not been to before,” said Medical Contingent Commander, Cmdr. Dave Damstra. “We were able to give them vital information they did not have, and it should be a great benefit in assisting with the recovery.”

In response to a formal request for engineering assistance, U.S. Navy and U.S. Air Force engineers embarked aboard Kearsarge assisted Haitian officials with assessing the condition of roads and bridges damaged by the storms.

“Engineers have mainly been doing bridge assessments; looking at bridges that have failed and determining most likely cause of failure as well as recommended expedient and long term means of repairing them,” said Air Force 1st Lieutenant Lindsey Maddox. “Also, we’ve done basic road assessments and in a couple of locations assessed the local populace’s access to water, electricity, and supply routes.”

The assessments conducted by Kearsarge engineers were turned over to Haitian officials and other agencies supporting or overseeing reconstruction efforts that will use the assessments as they work to restore damaged critical infrastructure to pre-disaster conditions.

Kearsarge engineers also assisted residents of Bainet by replacing damaged pipes vital to the delivery of fresh water in the southern city.

Kearsarge’s crew partnered with non-governmental organizations (NGO), United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti, Haitian government officials, and other agencies assisting in the disaster relief efforts who needed access to sites that we inaccessible by road.

“The ship and all [her] embarked elements were able to quickly respond and support USAID disaster relief efforts here,” said Capt. Fernandez “Frank” Ponds, commander of U.S. military relief operations in Haiti. “Our timely assistance to the people of Haiti reflects our nation’s and Fourth Fleet’s compassion for the many individuals and families impacted by these storms and its commitment to helping nations in times of crisis.”

According to USAID, as of Sept. 22, the U.S. has contributed more than $30 million in disaster assistance to the people of Haiti during the 2008 hurricane season.

“I am proud of the Kearsarge crew and all of the embarked units,” said Kearsarge Commanding Officer, Capt. Walt Towns. “All did not hesitate to answer the call when one of our neighbors needed assistance.”

“Through close coordination and cooperation with the numerous government and non-government organizations participating in this important mission, we’ve been able to obtain an equivalent, if not superior, lift capability to continue distributing aid to those in need,” explained Ponds. “Though our mission here has ended, the people of Haiti remain in our thoughts and prayers. It is our hope that we were able to provide some measure of comfort during this crisis.”

Kearsarge will remain in the Caribbean as part of Continuing Promise 2008, a humanitarian assistance mission that began with visits to Puerta Cabezas, Nicaragua, and Santa Marta, Colombia, where medical teams provided health-care services and engineers completed various construction and infrastructure repair projects.

Kearsarge will remain in the region through November and will continue her humanitarian assistance mission during scheduled visits to the Dominican Republic, Guyana, and Trinidad and Tobago.

Continuing Promise 2008 is a collaborative effort that includes the participation of U.S. military personnel, military medical personnel from Brazil, Canada, France, and the Netherlands, medical volunteers from the U.S. Public Health Service, and volunteers from NGOs, such as Operation Smile, Project Hope, and International Aid.

USS O’Kane, USS Reuben James Depart Pearl Harbor for Western Pacific

September 28, 2008
Pearl Harbor Welcome

Pearl Harbor Welcome

USS Chung Hoon enjoys a traditional Hawaiian welcome at Pearl Harbor. You can enjoy this beautiful picture every day by purchasing the poster, framed print, or 2009 calendar at The PatriArt Gallery.

The Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate USS Reuben James (FFG 57) and the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS O’Kane (DDG 77) departed their homeport of Naval Station (NAVSTA) Pearl Harbor Sept. 25 for a Mid-Pacific Surface Combatant Operational Employment.

The Mid-Pacific Surface Combatant Operational Employment program calls for nine of the 11 Hawaii-based surface combatants to conduct intermediate/advanced training and regular deployments in the Western Pacific, and is designed to improve the U.S. Pacific Fleet’s war fighting readiness and effectiveness.

Friends and family watched from the pier as their loved ones set sail for the Pacific Ocean.

“It’s what they’re here to do,” said the spouse of an O’Kane Sailor. “The best we can hope for is they come back to us safely.”

“We’re absolutely ready to do this,” said Cmdr. Joseph Naman, commanding officer of Reuben James. “We’ve spent a lot of time underway recently and are trained in all areas, so this is nothing new to the crew.”

Reuben James and O’Kane returned June 8 from a two-month deployment as part of the USS Nimitz (CVN 68) Carrier Strike Group (CSG) in support of the global war on terrorism.

Departing their friends and family after a short period of time can be strenuous, but the Sailors are ready for the challenges that are to come.

“It’s going to be another great experience,” said Boatswain’s Mate 2nd Class (SW/AW) Adan Ramos, assigned to O’Kane. “We’re all confident and ready to do everything we’re tasked to do.”

Guided missile destroyers provide multimission offensive and defensive capabilities, and can operate independently or as part of carrier battle groups, surface action groups, amphibious ready groups, and underway replenishment groups.

Frigates fulfill a Protection of Shipping (POS) mission as Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) combatants for amphibious expeditionary forces, underway replenishment groups and merchant convoys.

Michael Lantron

USS Theodore Roosevelt Deploys in Support of Maritime Security Operations

September 28, 2008
Valiant Shield

Valiant Shield

An Air Force B-2 bomber and US Navy fighter planes fly over three US Navy aircraft carrier strike groups. Enjoy this dynamic display of American power projection every day. Purchase the Valiant Shield poster, framed print, or 2009 calendar at The PatriArt Gallery. Or buy the Valiant Shield tee-shirt or souvenir beer stein at The Military Chest.

More than 5,000 Sailors departed their homeport Sept. 8 as USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71), flagship of the Carrier Strike Group (TRCSG), left for a regularly-scheduled deployment to support maritime security operations.

The strike group’s ships are prepared to conduct a variety of missions, including forward naval presence, maritime security operations, crisis response and theater support cooperation.

Roosevelt deploys with embarked Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 2, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 8 and Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 22.

“Theodore Roosevelt Carrier Strike Group units have completed all requirements for deployment and are prepared to achieve any missions we will be tasked to execute on deployment in support of theater commanders,” said Rear Adm. Frank Pandolfe, commander, TRCSG.

The strike group recently completed a Joint Task Force Exercise (JTFEX), made up of more than 15,000 service members from six countries working together to advance the art of coalition operations, as well as learning to maximize the unique capabilities and strengths of each member of the combined force.

Roosevelt Commanding Officer, Capt. Ladd Wheeler, praised his crew for the work they did in preparation for the deployment. He said the ship is ready; the crew is well-trained, and everyone is excited to get a chance to implement their training during the deployment.

“We can all take great pride in the men and women we are sending forward to represent our country,” said Wheeler. “They have each worked diligently to ensure that they are properly trained, and Theodore Roosevelt is prepared for a variety of missions we may encounter while on deployment.”

Other TRCSG assets include the guided-missile cruiser USS Monterey (CG 61); the guided missile destroyers USS The Sullivans (DDG 68), USS Mason (DDG 87) and USS Nitze (DDG 94); the attack submarine USS Springfield (SSN 761); and the fast combat support ship USNS Supply (T-AOE 3).

Monique Hilley (NNS)

USS Pennsylvania Completes Historic Deterrent Patrol

September 28, 2008
USS Alabama

USS Alabama

The Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine USS Alabama (SSBN 731)is homeported on Puget Sound at Kitsap Naval Base, Bangor, Washington. USS Alabama (SSBN 731) is a sister ship of USS Pennsylvania (SSBN 735). Purchase a 2009 calendar, a poster or a framed art print of USS Alabama (SSBN 731) in Puget Sound, with snow covered Mount Rainier rising in the background. Available exclusively at The PatriArt Gallery.

The blue crew of USS Pennsylvania (SSBN 735) recently returned from the ship’s 60th Strategic Deterrent Patrol. This historic patrol marked a significant milestone as it was the 500th successful patrol of the Ohio-class submarine Trident II D5 Strategic Weapons System (SWS).

“I am honored that Pennsylvania was in position to complete this historic patrol and milestone for the ballistic missile submarine fleet, and I’m extremely proud of my crew for their efforts in successfully completing this patrol,” said Cmdr. Brad Neff, commanding officer of USS Pennsylvania (Blue).

Pennsylvania is one of 14 ballistic missile submarines in the Navy today. Eight are stationed in Bangor, Wash., with the other six stationed in King’s Bay, Ga.

Each SSBN operates with two complete crews, identified as blue and gold, who alternate responsibility for taking the submarine to sea on mission. This command structure provides national defense planners better than 65 percent operational availability for each submarine and optimizes maintenance schedules ensuring each submarine can serve the nation for 40 years as designed.

“As the maritime strategy illustrates, preventing wars is as important as winning wars. For 500 straight patrols of the Trident II D5 weapon system, the ballistic missile submarine force has done just that,” said Neff.

Landing Craft, Air Cushioned – LCAC

September 23, 2008
LCAC

LCAC

A US Navy Landing Craft — Air Cushion or LCAC races to shore. Put this thrilling image on your wall as a poster or framed print. Or buy the LCAC greeting card or postcard set. All waiting for you at The PatriArt Gallery.

Air cushion craft for transporting, ship-to-shore and across the beach, personnel, weapons, equipment, and cargo of the assault elements of the Marine Air-Ground Task Force.
 
Features
The Landing Craft Air Cushion (LCAC) is a high-speed, over-the-beach fully amphibious landing craft, capable of carrying a 60-75 ton payload. It is used to transport the weapons systems, equipment, cargo and personnel of the assault elements of the Marine Air-Ground Task Force from ship to shore and across the beach. LCAC can carry heavy payloads, such as an M-1 tank, at high speeds. The LCAC payload capability and speed combine to significantly increase the ability of the Marine Ground Element to reach the shore. Air cushion technology allows this vehicle to reach more than 70 percent of the world’s coastline, while only about 15 percent of that coastline is accessible by conventional landing craft.
 
Background
Concept Design of the present day LCAC began in the early 1970s with the full-scale Amphibious Assault Landing Craft (AALC) test vehicle. During the advanced development stage, two prototypes where built. JEFF A was designed and built by Aerojet General in California. JEFF B was designed and built by Bell Aerospace in New Orleans, Louisiana. These two craft confirmed the technical feasibility and operational capability that ultimately led to the production of LCAC. JEFF B was selected as the design basis for today’s LCAC.

The first LCAC was delivered to the Navy in 1984 and Initial Operational Capability (IOC) was achieved in 1986. Approval for full production was granted in 1987. After an initial 15-craft production competition contract was awarded to each of two companies, Textron Marine and Land Systems (TMLS) of New Orleans, La., and Avondale Gulfport Marine, TMLS was selected to build the remaining craft. A total of ninety-one LCAC have now been built. The final craft, LCAC 91, was delivered to the U.S. Navy in 2001. This craft served as the basis for the Navy’s LCAC Service Life Extension Program (SLEP). To date three operational craft have been delivered to the Navy in the SLEP configuration.

LCAC first deployed in 1987 aboard USS Germantown (LSD 42). LCAC are transported in and operate from all amphibious well deck ships including LHA, LHD, LSD and LPD. The craft operates with a crew of five.

In addition to beach landing, LCAC provides personnel transport, evacuation support, lane breaching, mine countermeasure operations, and Marine and Special Warfare equipment delivery.

 
Program Status
All of the planned 91 craft have been delivered to the Navy. A Service Life Extension Program (SLEP) is currently in progress to add service life to the craft design life of 10 years, delaying the need to replace these versatile craft.
 
Point Of Contact
Corporate Communications Office
Naval Sea Systems Command (SEA 00D)
Washington, DC 20376
 
General Characteristics, LCAC 1
Builder: Textron Marine and Land Systems/Avondale Gulfport Marine.
Date Deployed: 1982.
Propulsion: Legacy 4-Allied-Signal TF-40B gas turbines (2 for propulsion / 2 for lift); 16,000 hp sustained; 2-shrouded reversible pitch airscrews; 4-double-entry fans, centrifugal or mixed flow (lift)
SLEP 4–Vericor Power Systems ETF-40B gas turbines with Full Authority Digital Engine Control
Length: 87 feet 11 inches (26.4 meters).
Beam: 47 feet (14.3 meters).
Displacement: 87.2 tons (88.60 metric tons) light; 170-182 tons (172.73 – 184.92 metric tons) full load.
Speed: 40+ knots (46+ mph; 74.08 kph) with full load.
Range: 200 miles at 40 kts with payload / 300 miles at 35 kts with payload.
Crew: Five.
Load: 60 tons / 75 ton overload (54.43/68.04 tonnes)
Military lift: 24 troops or 1 MBT.
Armament: 2 – 12.7mm MGs. Gun mounts will support: M-2HB .50 cal machine gun; Mk-19 Mod3 40mm grenade launcher; M-60 machine gun.
Electronics: Radars, Navigation: Marconi LN 66; I band / Sperry Marine Bridge Master E.