Navy Orders Two Hellfire SSMM Systems for LCS

Sailors from the USS Detroit (LCS-7) complete a successful launch of the Longbow Hellfire Missile in this 2018 photo. The USS Detroit was operating in the Atlantic Ocean supporting testing of the LCS Surface-to-Surface Missile Module (SSMM). U.S. Navy / Ensign David Cravey

ARLINGTON, Va. — The U.S. Navy has ordered two more Surface-to-Surface Missile Modules (SSMMs) for integration into the Surface Warfare Mission Package of the littoral combat ships, bringing to four the number of SSMMs on order. 

The Naval Sea Systems Command awarded Northrop Grumman Systems Corp. a 10.7 million firm-fixed-price contract modification for two additional SSMM systems for delivery by November 2022, a Nov. 20 Defense Department contract announcement said. 

The SSMM is a modular weapons system that fires Lockheed Martin-built AGM-114L Longbow Hellfire missiles from launchers built by Teledyne Brown Engineering. Each launcher houses a total of 24 missiles. A prototype launcher has demonstrated the capability to defend against multiple swarming Fast Attack Craft/Fast Inshore Attack Craft (FAC/FIAC). During one test, a volley of six missiles were launched in rapid succession from an LCS, successfully destroying a swarm of six high-speed targets. 

More than 100 missiles have been fired to date with a greater than 90% successful engagement rate.  

The SSMM achieved Initial Operational Capability on the Freedom-variant LCS in February 2019 and was deployed on USS Detroit in November 2019. 

Northrop Grumman is under contract to build four SSMM systems so far. The Navy has a requirement for 12 SSMM systems.