Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS)/Frigate Program: Background and Issues for Congress [March 21, 2017] [open pdf - 2MB]
"The Navy's Littoral Combat Ship (LCS)/Frigate program is a program to procure a large number of LCSs and modified LCSs. The modified LCSs are to be referred to as frigates. The LCS program has been controversial over the years due to past cost growth, design and construction issues with the lead ships built to each design (including, most recently, multiple problems with the ships' propulsion systems), concerns over the ships' survivability (i.e., ability to withstand battle damage), concerns over whether the ships are sufficiently armed and would be able to perform their stated missions effectively, and concerns over the development and testing of the ships' modular mission packages. The Navy's execution of the program has been a matter of congressional oversight attention for several years. Two very different baseline LCS designs are currently being built. [...] The LCS program poses several issues for Congress, including whether to approve, reject, or modify the Navy's FY2017 funding requests for the program, and whether to approve, reject, or modify the Secretary of Defense's December 2015 direction to the Navy to reduce the program from 52 ships to 40, and to neck down to a single design variant not later than FY2019."
CRS Report for Congress, RL33741
Federation of American Scientists: http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/index.html