Mix’n’match bridge of the future

GD_LCS bridge mockup

It’s hard to reconcile the somewhat goofy bridge scene above with the wicked looking warship below, but they represent the same yet unbuilt U.S. Navy design called a Littoral Combat Ship (LCS). Picture an aluminum and steel 127m (417’) trimaran capable of sustained “sprints” at 47 knots and tight manuevering—even in shoal water—with waterjets and steerable thrusters. While flying last week I met an enthusiastic General Dynamics engineer who gave me the Web address of this fascinating project. Of particular note to electronics geeks is the design’s “flexible information technology backbone that allows ‘plug and play’ integration.” Apparently the Navy has imposed “open architecture” requirements and GD’s solution “leverages industry standards and non-proprietary interfaces.” I guess that explains all the Dell monitors on the mockup bridge, and I wonder if they are using NMEA 2000? And wouldn’t the LCS design make a hell of a megayacht, though Larry Ellison—no relation—would have to settle for something shorter than his current ride. (More pictures here).


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Ben Ellison

Ben Ellison

Panbo editor, publisher & chief bottlewasher from 4/2005 until 8/2018, and now excited to have Ben Stein as very able publisher, webmaster, and editing colleague. Panbo is going to the next level in 2019 and beyond.

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