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US Navy accepts first Freedom LCS since discovering widespread defect in combining gear system


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WASHINGTON — The U.S. Navy is satisfied with the solution to its littoral combat ship combining gear woes, having accepted delivery of the first ship to receive the new system, service leaders announced.

The Freedom-variant LCS, made by Lockheed Martin at the Fincantieri Marinette Marine shipyard in Wisconsin, has suffered several propulsion-related casualties over the years. In January, the Navy announced it would not accept any new ships from Lockheed following the identification of a classwide defect: The bearings in the combining gear failed when the ship tried to operate at full power, with the system unable to withstand the pressure of fusing max power from both the gas turbine and the diesel engine to help the ship reach speeds near 40 knots.

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