The Ship to Shore Connector (SSC) is the evolutionary replacement for the existing fleet of Landing Craft, Air Cushion (LCAC) vehicles, which are nearing the end of their service life. The SSC is an air cushion vehicle whose mission is to land surface assault elements in support of Operational Maneuver from the Sea (OMFTS), at over-the-horizon distances, while operating from amphibious ships and mobile landing platforms. SSC provides increased performance to handle current and future missions, as well as improvements which will increase craft availability and reduce total ownership cost.
Ship to Shore Connector (SSC), Landing Craft, Air Cushion (LCAC) 100, conducts exercises in the local waterways of Louisiana. The craft is the evolutionary replacement for the existing fleet of Landing Craft Air Cushion vehicles.
(Image credit: Textron Systems)
The SSC program will significantly enhance the Navy and Marine Corps team’s capability to execute a broad spectrum of missions well into the 21st century, from humanitarian assistance and disaster response to multidimensional amphibious assault. LCACs/SSCs are used primarily to haul vehicles, heavy equipment, and supplies through varied environmental conditions from amphibious ships to over the beach.
Additionally, an enclosed personnel transport module can be loaded aboard that can hold up to 180 passengers or 54 casualty personnel. LCACs have proven to be very useful in supporting non-hostile amphibious operations and were vital in delivering life-saving equipment, food, water, and medical supplies in humanitarian relief efforts throughout the world. It is anticipated that SSC will be called upon to perform in a similar manner.
The SSC program is the first major naval acquisition program in more than 15 years to be designed “in-house” by the Navy rather than by private industry. The Navy design team progressed through an evolutionary design process, beginning with a set-based design process, where craft level requirements were functionally decomposed into discrete system level functional requirements documents (FRDs). The FRDs formed the functional basis for selecting trade spaces, and to start Preliminary Design. Preliminary Design was followed by a Contract Design period, which developed the Allocated Baseline and formed the basis for the SSC contract solicitation.
The Detail, Design and Construction contract was awarded to Textron Systems, a Textron Inc. company, located in Slidell, LA., whose major subcontractors are L-3 Communications of Camden, NJ, GE Dowty of Great Britain, Rolls-Royce Naval Marine of Indianapolis, IN, Innovative Power Solutions of Eatontown, Meritor, Inc of Troy, MI, and Umoe Mandal of Norway. Other subcontractors include Marvin Land Systems of Inglewood, CA, Donaldson Company, Inc. of Minneapolis, MN, Exlar Corporation of Chanhassen, MA, Advanced Composite Products & Technology of Huntington Beach, CA, Supreme Integrated Technology of Harahan, LA, and Technology Dynamics, Inc. of Bergenfield, New Jersey.
The SSC Program of Record is for a total of 73 craft (one Test and Training and 72 operational craft). Deliveries began in fiscal year 2020 with initial operational capability projected for fiscal year 2022.
Updated Aug 2020