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The new combat ship Navy of the United States, the future USS Billings (LCS 15), arrived at the port Truman Harbor Naval Air Station Key West in preparation for commissioning ceremony service on August 3.
Billings is the seventeenth coastal fighter that enters the fleet and the eighth of the Freedom variant. It is the first ship named after Billings, the largest city in the US state of Montana.
The Key West Naval Air Station is the most modern fighter facility for all military services, provides world-class support to US and foreign naval ships, and is the main training center for surface and underground military operations.
Senator Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin will deliver the keynote address of the ceremony. Sharla Tester, the wife of Montana Senator Jon Tester, the senior member of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, will serve as the vessel’s sponsor. The ceremony will be highlighted by Mrs. Tester breaking a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow to formally baptize the ship, a traditional Navy tradition.
The christening of the future USS Billings brings this great warship one step closer to the fleet, where, for decades, it will serve as a tribute to the great people of Billings and the state of Montana, as well as to the highly qualified men and women who built the new coastal fighter ship of our nation, ”said Honorable Sean Stackley, Acting Secretary of the Navy.
The LCS class consists of two variants, the Freedom variant and the Independence variant, designed and built by two industrial equipment. The Freedom variant team is led by Lockheed Martin (for odd helmets, for example, LCS 1). The Independence variant team is led by Austal USA (for LCS 6 and the following even helmets).
Each Control and Surveillance Center is equipped with a unique mission package consisting of mission modules that contain combat systems and support equipment. The crew of a specialized vessel will be combined with aviation means to deploy manned and unmanned vehicles and sensors in support of countermeasures related to mines, anti-submarine warfare or surface warfare missions.