Navy Issues RFI for FFG(X)
WASHINGTON — The Navy released a request for information (RFI) on July 10 for its Guided Missile Frigate (FFG(X)) replacement program. The response date for the RFI is Aug. 24.
The competition for the FFG(X) will consider existing parent designs for a small surface combatant that can be modified to accommodate the specific capability requirements prescribed by the U.S. Navy, according to the RFI.
The service expects the FFG(X) will help achieve select sea control objectives and perform maritime security operations. The ships will be designed to fully support Combatant and Fleet Commanders during conflict by supplementing the fleet's undersea and surface warfare capabilities, allow for independent operations in a contested environment, extend the fleet tactical grid, and host and control unmanned systems. They also will relieve large surface combatants from stressing routine duties during operations other than war, according to the RFI.
The platform will employ unmanned systems to penetrate and dwell in contested environments, operating at greater risk to gain sensor and weapons advantages over the adversary, according to the RFI. The FFG(X) will establish a local sensor network using passive onboard sensors, embarked aircraft and elevated/tethered systems and unmanned vehicles to gather information and then act as a gateway to the fleet tactical grid using resilient communications systems and networks.
The RFI’s major objectives are to:
■ Understand industry's parent designs and their ability to integrate both the warfare system elements and the threshold requirements into the new FFG(X) design.
■ Understand the sensitivities to the parent design for integrating either the warfare systems or the threshold requirements.
■ Understand the drivers in non-recurring engineering, recurring engineering, production schedule, and operations and support costs.
According to the RFI, the Navy hopes to award a Detail Design and Construction contract for the FFG(X) in fiscal 2020.