FAS | Military | DOD 101 | Systems | Ships ||||
Index | Search | Join FAS

LSD-41 Whidbey Island class

Dock Landing Ships support amphibious operations including landings via Landing Craft Air Cushion (LCAC), conventional landing craft and helicopters, onto hostile shores. These ships transport and launch amphibious craft and vehicles with their crews and embarked personnel in amphibious assault operations.

The LSD 41 is a modified version of the LSD 36 class with design efforts directed to support emerging amphibious warfare concepts.The ships transport and launch loaded amphibious craft and vehicles with their crews and embarked personnel in amphibious assault operations. The ships feature a 440-foot well deck capable of holding four LCACs, a flight deck able to land and launch up to two CH-53E helicopters, the Navy’s latest diesel propulsion and engineering technology, advanced repair facilities, complete medical and dental facilities, and troop berthing accommodations for up to 627 embarked Marines. Limited docking and repair service are provided for both conventional and air cushion craft.

The LSD 41 class ship program replaced the eight aging LSD 28 class ships which reached the end of their service lives during the period 1984-1990. LSD-41 was designed specifically to operate LCAC vessels. It has the largest capacity for these landing craft (four) of any U.S. Navy amphibious platform. The ships use a well deck which is flooded to launch and recover landing craft. LCACs are assault landing craft capable of speeds in excess of 40 knots when carrying a 60-ton payload. Using this versatile craft, RUSHMORE is able to carry out an amphibious assault against a wider range of beaches at distances that were not operationally feasible in the past. After departing the ship, the assault craft are directed toward the shore by the ship's Combat Information Center (CIC).

The LSD-41/49 Class Smart Gator Enabling Technologies (Enabling Technologies) upgrade replaces specified existing machinery control and monitoring systems units/consoles plus the addition of specific equipment. Overcoming component obsolescence, reducing equipment support costs, and reducing workload are key objectives in the Navy’s upgrade plan. Reducing the number of different assembly types and total number of assemblies required are considered key factors in meeting this objective. The descriptions of Enabling Technologies follows:

The Smart Gator Enabling Technology upgrade provides for electronic technology modernization by replacing the existing rigid HMI console designs with Software Alterable Graphic Interfaced multi-functional workstations.


Propulsion Four Colt Industries 16 Cylinder Diesels,
two shafts, 33,000 shaft horsepower
Two five-blade Controllable Pitch Propellers
Length Overall Length: 610 ft
Waterline Length: 580 ft
Beam Extreme Beam: 84 ft
Waterline Beam: 84 ft
Draft Maximum Navigational Draft: 21 ft
Draft Limit: 21 ft
Displacement Light Displacement: 11471 tons
Full Displacement: 16360 tons
Dead Weight: 4889 tons
Well Deck440 feet long, 50 feet wide, floodable to 10 feet aft, 6 feet forward
Water Barrier12 feet 3 inches high, 50 feet long,
divides well deck into forward (dry) and aft (wet) compartments
Helicopter DeckTwo spots, 212 feet long, 83 feet wide
Speed 20+ knots (23.5+ miles per hour)
Landing Craft 4 LCAC Landing Craft, Air Cushion
Combat Systems AN/SPS-49 Air Search Radar
AN/SPS-67 Surface Search Radar
AN/SPS-64 Navigation Radar
AN/SLQ-32 Electronic Counter Measures set
AN/SLQ-25 (NIXIE) Torpedo Counter Measures system
Armament 2 - 25mm MK 38 Machine Guns
2 - 20mm MK 15 Phalanx CIWS mounts
2 - .50 cal. machine guns
Generators Four Fairbanks-Morse 12 cylinder Ship Service Diesel Generators, each capable of producing 1300 kw.
Ship's Boats One Mk-6 50 foot Utility boat
Two Mk-12 36 foot LCP (L)'s
One 14 foot punt
Cranes One 15-ton gantry crane
One 20-ton fixed kingpost crane
One 60-ton fixed kingpost crane
Turntables 36 foot diameter, 360 degree rotation, capable of handling two MK-55 trucks
Crew Ships Company: 22 officers, 391 enlisted
Marine Detachment: 402 plus 102 surge
Unit Operating Cost
Annual Average
$20,000,000 [source: [FY1996 VAMOSC]


Name Number Builder Cost Homeport Ordered Commissioned Decommissioned
Whidbey Island LSD-41 Lockheed$339 M Little Creek09 Feb 198109 Feb 1985~ 2015
GermantownLSD-42Avondale $304 M Sasebo26 Mar 198201 Feb 1986~ 2016
Fort McHenry LSD-43 Lockheed$272 M Sasebo27 Jan 198324 Jul 1987~ 2017
Gunston Hall LSD-44Avondale $167 M Little Creek21 Nov 198424 Feb 1989~ 2019
Comstock LSD-45Avondale $153 M San Diego26 Nov 198412 Jan 1990~ 2020
Tortuga LSD-46Avondale $153 M Little Creek26 Nov 198407 Sep 1990~ 2020
Rushmore LSD-47Avondale $149 M San Diego11 Dec 198526 Apr 1991~ 2021
Ashland LSD-48Avondale $149 M Little Creek11 Dec 198512 Mar 1992~ 2022

Sources and Resources

FAS | Military | DOD 101 | Systems | Ships ||||
Index | Search | Join FAS

Maintained by Robert Sherman
Originally created by John Pike
Updated Friday, November 26, 1999 7:41:16 PM