Surface Forces: October 19, 1999


: Bollinger Shipyards has launched the 14th of the Cyclone-class coastal patrol boats for the US Navy. These are designed to patrol the coasts of potential enemy nations, not the US coast. They are small vessels designed to provide a cheap platform for low-intensity conflicts. This ship is essentially the first of a new class, as it incorporates several key design changes: a new command and control system on the bridge, a 9-foot extension of the stern to allow special operations rubber boats to be launched and recovered while the ship is under way, and radar reduction technology to allow it to operate in more dangerous areas.--Stephen V Cole


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