Constellation-class frigate (design)

Constellation-class frigate (design) 0Constellation-class frigate (design) 1

Basic information

Country of build:

Ship measurements

6,700 t
151.18 m
19.81 m


Propulsion system:
  • 1 * General Electric LM2500+G4 gas turbine;
  • 2 * electric propulsion motors;
  • 4 * ship service diesel generators;
  • 1 * auxiliary propulsion unit
26 knots
6,000 nmi (11,000 km; 6,900 mi) at 16 kn (30 km/h; 18 mph), electric drive


Total capacity:

Combat assets

Boats & landing craft:
  • 2 * rigid-hulled inflatable boats
  • Aegis Baseline 10 Combat System
  • AN/SPY-6(V)3 Enterprise Air Surveillance Radar (EASR)
  • AN/SPS-73(V)18 — Next Generation Surface Search Radar
  • AN/SLQ-61 light weight towed array sonar
  • AN/SQS-62 Variable-Depth Sonar
  • AN/SQQ-89F undersea warfare/anti-submarine warfare combat system
  • Cooperative Engagement Capability
  • 2 * SLQ-32(V)6 Surface Electronic Warfare Improvement Program (SEWIP) Block 2
  • 4 * Mk53 Nulka decoy launching system
  • 32 Mark 41 VLS cells with:
  • Possibly RIM-162 ESSM Block 2 and/or RIM-174 Standard ERAM missiles
  • Planned RIM-66 Standard SM-2 Block 3C
  • 16 * canister-launched over-the-horizon anti-ship weapons (likely Naval Strike Missile)
  • RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile launched from Mk 49 Guided Missile Launching System (21 cell)
  • Mk 110 57 mm gun with the Advanced Low Cost Munition Ordnance (ALaMO) projectile and related systems
  • Various machine guns M240 or M2
  • 1 * MH-60R Seahawk helicopter
  • MQ-8C Firescout

The Constellation class is a class of multi-mission guided-missile frigates under development for the United States Navy as a follow-on to the modular littoral combat ship. The U.S. Navy announced the FFG(X) frigate project in the United States Department of Defense Request For Information (RFI) on 10 July 2017.

The U.S. Navy selected five shipbuilders to evolve their designs into a prospective design for the proposed twenty FFG(X) guided-missile frigates. On 30 April 2020, it was announced that Fincantieri Marinette Marine had won the contract with its FREMM multipurpose frigate-based design. The project was later renamed FFG-62 program after the lead ship was named.

The U.S. Navy procured the first FFG 62 in FY2020, the next was awarded in April 2021, and the third is planned to be awarded is FY22. The U.S. Navy's proposed FY2020 budget request was $1.281 billion for the procurement of the first FFG 62. The U.S. Navy's FY2020 budget submission shows that subsequent ships in the class are estimated by the Navy to cost $850 to $950 million each in then-year dollars.

The U.S. Navy's intention to buy the first FFG(X) in 2020 did not allow enough time to develop a completely new design for the platform. Consequently, the U.S. Navy intended for the design of the FFG(X) to be a modified version of an existing «parent» ship design. So there was a competition for FFG(X) is envisioned to consider existing parent designs for a Small Surface Combatant that can be modified to accommodate the specific capability requirements prescribed by the U.S. Navy.

The U.S. Navy wanted a frigate that could keep up with the aircraft carriers and have sensors networked in with the rest of the fleet to expand the overall tactical picture available to the group. The FFG(X) will normally aggregate into strike groups and Large Surface Combatant led surface action groups, but also possess the ability to robustly defend itself during conduct of independent operations while connected and contributing to the fleet tactical grid.

The new frigate will have a minimum of 32 Mark 41 Vertical Launch System cells aboard the ship for primarily anti-air warfare for self-defense or escort missions.

The class will use a Combined Diesel Electric and Gas Hull, Mechanical and Electrical (HM&E) propulsion system which has never been used in any other U.S. Navy ship. The new propulsion system will be required to be tested on land, in order to reduce the risk of engine failure, which has plagued the previous LCS program.

On 30 April 2020, it was announced that Fincantieri Marinette Marine's FREMM multipurpose frigate had won the contest and was awarded a $795 million contract for detailed design and construction of the lead ship, with options for nine additional ships. On 20 May 2021, the U.S. Navy issued Marinette Marine (after 2009 — Fincantieri Marinette Marine) a $554 million contract to start building the future USS Congress (FFG 63).


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