An MQ8B Fire Scout unmanned aircraft system from Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron HSM 35 performs deck landing qualifications aboard the littoral combat ship USS Fort Worth LCS 3. The Northrop Grumman MQ8 Fire Scout is an unmanned autonomous helicopter developed by Northrop Grumman for use by the United States Armed Forces. The Fire Scout is designed to provide reconnaissance situational awareness aerial fire support and precision targeting support for ground air and sea forces.
USS Independence is equipped with larger helicopter landing pads and small craft storage bays to allow for rapid troop deployments.Littoral combat ships are designed for operation close to shore with enhanced maneuverability and speed for picking and choosing engagements. USS Independence, along with other LCS-class vessels, is intended to make use of its sleek, nimble design for mine sweeping, patrolling and anti-piracy missions.
The largest ship ever built for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) has taken to sea as it begins its final contractor trials, The 27,800 tonne (30,600 ton) Nuship Canberra is the first of two Land Helicopter Dock (LHD) ships under construction for the Australian Defence Force.