|Left: The Coast Guard Cutter Waesche steams in formation with ships from U.S. and allied navies during training exercises this summer. Right: Coast Guard personnel utilize C4ISR equipment during operations on the Waesche. U.S. Coast Guard photos.|
September 5, 2014 - The Coast Guard awarded a $31 million contract to Lockheed Martin Aug. 21, 2014, to purchase equipment to upgrade the electronic systems known as C4ISR – or Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance – on three National Security Cutters and at the NSC C4ISR training facility.
This action will create an enhanced and standardized C4ISR baseline for the NSC class based on the prototype systems that were tested aboard Coast Guard Cutter Waesche earlier this year. Under the contract, complete ship sets will be procured for Coast Guard Cutters Stratton, Bertholf and Hamilton and the NSC training facility in Petaluma, California.
The Coast Guard was able to achieve cost efficiencies by bundling orders for multiple ships – reducing the per unit cost. Installation of the equipment will be scheduled to coincide with the regular maintenance and duty schedules of the cutters.
The C4ISR upgrade focuses on improving “interoperability,” or the ability of Coast Guard operating units to share information and coordinate operations with each other, with shore-based command centers and with other government agencies and allies. Other components will allow cutters to send and receive tactical information including sensor, navigational and planning data to other U.S. military units as well as tactical sharing with international assets.
The upgrade also improves the equipment and software that communicate information from various sensor and communications systems to the weapons targeting controls on the NSC.
Similar upgrades will be added to the production process and accomplished prior to delivery of the remaining NSCs.