US Navy to equip Amphibious Ships with Containerized Weapon System

The landing platform dock USS San Antonio. The US Navy has said that San Antonio class ships are among those they are exploring the idea of arming with a containerized missile launch system (US Navy)

Power projection capability is one of the most important pillars of US naval power. However, the increased firepower of surface ships made amphibious ships more vulnerable. To eliminate this weakness or reduce the vulnerability against the surface ships, the first solution appears in mind is to increase the firepower of the amphibious ships.

As a result, at least one amphibious warfare ship of the U.S. Navy will be equipped with Norwegian-designed Naval Strike Missile (NSM), in the coming year. This is part of a larger effort to look at ways to increase the firepower of these types of vessels, which could eventually include the addition of containerized missile launchers.

U.S. Marine Corps Major General Tracy King, the head of the Expeditionary Warfare division within the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, gave reporters details about these plans on Jan. 8. 2021.            

“The LPDs need the ability to reach out and defend themselves and sink another ship,” Major General King explained. “It’s not from the aspect of using them as a strike platform; it will drastically increase their survivability if the enemy has to honour that threat.” the General added.

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