Four Navy Ships Set for Delivery of Newest SSDS Configuration

A U.S. Marine Corps MV-22 lands aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer (right) while the amphibious dock landing ship USS Harpers Ferry follows. Boxer will be among four ships to receive the newest SSDS configuration this summer. U.S. Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Kyle Carlstrom

ARLINGTON, Va. — Lockheed Martin is on tap to deliver the latest version of the Ship Self-Defense System (SSDS) to four Navy ships this summer, a company official said.

Lockheed Martin was confirmed as the Combat Systems Engineering Agent (CSEA) for the SSDS program on Dec. 13 when a protest to the selection by the previous CSEA was denied, Jim Sheridan, Lockheed’s vice president for naval combat and missile defense systems, said in a Jan. 14 briefing to reporters at the Surface Navy Association convention here. The initial bid was made in August 2017.

Sheridan said the major challenge since the resolution of the protest was the tight timeline to make the deliveries by July.

The SSDS Advanced Capability Build 20 (ACB 20) will be delivered to the aircraft USS George Washington (CVN 73), the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer (LHD 4) and the amphibious platform dock ships USS San Antonio (LPD 17) and USS Fort Lauderdale (LPD 28).

SSDS ACB 20 is a combat system that will integrate such systems as the Evolved SeaSparrow Missile Block II system, the SLQ-32 Surface Electronic Warfare Program III system and the Enterprise Air-Search Radar. The upgrade features cybersecurity enhancements and fire-control loop modernization. It also will integrate the Advanced Training Domain.

In addition, the SSDS ACB 10 will be migrated from Hardware Technology Insertion (HTI) 12 to HTI 16 infrastructure.   

Sheridan said the selection of the Lockheed Martin as CSEA for the SSDS makes the company the CSEA for aircraft carriers and most surface combatants, the major exception being the Zumwalt-class guided-missile destroyers. The company plans to bid to become the CSEA for the new FFG(X) guided-missile frigate. Lockheed Martin is adding the SSDS ACB 20 software to its Common Source Library, also inhabited by its Aegis Combat System software.