The US Navy’s Independence-class littoral combat ship USS Coronado (LCS 4) has successfully completed the operational testing of a new mine detection solution known as the Coastal Battlefield Reconnaissance and Analysis (COBRA) system.

The operational testing represents the second phase of testing for USS Coronado and followed the completion of developmental testing.

LCS 4 engaged in various port and underway operations with support from Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 21 and Mine Countermeasure Detachment 6 during the latest phase.

"LCS 4 engaged in various port and underway operations with support from Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 21 and Mine Countermeasure Detachment 6 during the latest phase."

The test programme included the identification of possible landing zones for amphibious forces, as well as detecting mines and locating obstacles that would help prevent forces from entering mission-critical areas.

Aviation detachment officer in charge lieutenant commander James Gelsinon said: “We worked diligently to prepare for COBRA operational testing.

“The lessons learned during developmental testing, and the close relationship with the crew, were key to our success.”

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Navy personnel used an MQ-8B Fire Scout helicopter and an MH-60 Sierra aircraft to process data and plan beach zone operations as part of the trial initiative.

In addition, the operational testing involved the upgrade of the Fire Scout and Mission Package Computing Environment to enable the system to support coastal mine reconnaissance missions.

The keel was originally laid for LCS 4 on 17 December 2009 at Austal USA in Mobile, Alabama.

The vessel was christened Coronado on 11 January 2012 and subsequently commissioned with the US Navy on 5 April 2014.

LCS vessels are high-speed, agile, shallow draft, focused-mission surface combatants that have been specifically designed to conduct a variety of operations in the littoral environment, as well as in open oceans.

The US Navy’s LCS surface vessels have the ability to counter evolving threats, either independently or within a network of surface combatants.