Retired frigates to be target of live-fire tests at RIMPAC exercise | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


Retired frigates to be target of live-fire tests at RIMPAC exercise

The retired frigate USS Thach will be sunk during Rim of the Pacific war games in July from fire including the first Harpoon missile shot from a littoral combat ship, a type of U.S. warship being deployed regularly to Singapore and the volatile South China Sea.

The Navy originally wanted 52 of the now controversial littoral combat ships, which were touted for their speed and shallow draft for operations in near-shore environments against pirates, mines and diesel submarines.

With the rise of China, however, concerns were raised about the ships’ armor and lethality, and the Pentagon reduced the total and is seeking a more robust frigate as a replacement.

While in Hawaii, the littoral combat ship USS Coronado will test the greater lethality of a Harpoon missile, which has the capability of destroying enemy ships 100 miles away, the Navy said. The Navy is seeking to arm all of its LCSs with over-the-horizon missiles.

Two variants of the LCS are being built: Freedom and Independence. The Coronado, out of San Diego, is an unusual-looking, all-aluminum trimaran design. After RIMPAC the ship will make the first Independence-variant LCS deployment to Singapore.

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