USS Manchester
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USS Manchester

USS Manchester
USS Manchester
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USS Manchester
 
About the Ship

The USS Manchester is a Independence-class littoral combat ship.

The littoral combat ship (LCS) is a class of relatively small surface vessels intended for operations in the littoral zone (close to shore) by the United States Navy. It was "envisioned to be a networked, agile, stealthy surface combatant capable of defeating anti-access and asymmetric threats in the littorals."

The hull design evolved from a project at Austal to design a 40 knot cruise ship. That hull design evolved into the high-speed trimaran ferry HSC Benchijigua Express and the Independence class was then proposed by General Dynamics and Austal as a contender for Navy plans to build a fleet of small, multipurpose warships to operate in the littoral zone. Two ships were approved, to compete with Lockheed Martin's Freedom-class design.

Despite initial plans to only build ships of the winner out of the two competing Independence or Freedom classes, in 2010 the Navy announced plans to order up to ten additional ships of each class, for a total 12 ships per class. In March 2016 the Navy announced their intention to order an additional two ships, increasing the order to 13 ships of each class.

It was announced in early September 2016 that the first four vessels of the LCS program would be used as test ships rather than being deployed with the fleet. This includes Independence and Coronado.

As of November 2016, the lead ship and three additional ships have been commissioned. Starting in 2019, ships of this class will be designated as fast frigates (FF) which will include increased firepower and heavier armor.

USS Manchester
The Littoral Combat Ship (LCS)
USS Manchester
USS Manchester
USS Manchester

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