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Ship Self-Defense System (SSDS)
Publication: NAVSEA Issued: Date: March 2003 Reporter:



Official US Navy Website : Chief of Naval Operations

Date March 2003

Web Link




Ship Self-Defense System (SSDS) is intended to integrate and coordinate all the existing sensors and weapons aboard a ship. SSDS makes it possible to automate the detect through engage sequence through the use of identification and engagement doctrine statements. The system will eventually be installed aboard most classes of non-Aegis ships. 

System Architecture Ship Self-Defense System (SSDS) Mk 1 

QRCC vs. SSDS. The entire combat system, including the sensors and weapons, is known as the Quick Reaction Combat Capability (QRCC). SSDS is the integrating element of QRCC. SSDS is not intended to improve the performance of any sensor or weapon beyond the performance of the stand-alone version. The primary advantage SSDS brings to the combat system suite is the ability to coordinate both hard kill and soft kill systems and employ them to their optimum tactical advantage.

System Description

SSDS consists primarily of commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) equipment, including a [FDDI] fiber optic local area network (LAN) and distributed processors called LAN access units (LAU). The LAUs perform all of the processing chores as well as connect the various sensors and weapons to the LAN.

LAUs are contained in two types of enclosures. Single LAU cabinets and multiple LAU cabinets. Multiple LAU cabinets hold three different LAUs. Each LAU cabinet is equipped with an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) and a VME card cage. Most of the processor cards are identical and interchangeable, making stocking of spares a simple matter.

System Configurations

There are two major variants of SSDS. SSDS Mk 1 which is installed on all LSD 41 class ships, and SSDS Mk 2 which will eventually be installed on all aircraft carries and LPD 17 class ships.

SSDS Mk 1 interfaces with the AN/SPS-49A(V)1 Air Search Radar, AN/SPS-67 Surface Search Radar, AN/SLQ-32 Electronic Warfare System, Centralized Identification Friend or Foe (CIFF), Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM), Phalanx Close-in Weapon System (CIWS), and the MK 36 Decoy Launching System (DLS). The operator interface consists of a three position command table, which provides displays and input devices for the Sensor Supervisor (SSUP), the Tactical Action Officer (TAO) and Weapons Supervisor (WSUP).

SSDS Mk 2 has three planned modifications MOD 0 which will be installed only in USS NIMITZ, MOD 1 which will eventually be installed in all carriers, and MOD 2 which will be installed in all LPD 17 class ships.

SSDS Mk 2 MOD 0 interfaces with CEC 2.1a [Co-operative Engagement Capability], ACDS BLK 1 [Advanced Combat Direction System], RAM [Rolling Airframe Missile] and RNSSMS [Rearchitectured NATO Sea Sparrow Surface Missile System]. It will be the weapons control element of the NIMITZ combat system suite.

SSDS MK 2 MODS 1 and 2 will replace ACDS BLK 1 and perform the command and control, and weapons control functions for carriers and LPD 17 ships.

MODs 1 and 2 will interface with CEC 2.1b and all command and control, and weapon systems of their respective ship classes.

Operational Testing

SSDS Mk 1 has been assessed to be operationally effective and operationally suitable. Future testing will be done for the SSDS Mk 2 variants, however the scope of testing for each modification has not been defined.

With acknowledgement to NAVSEA.