The US branch of Australian shipbuilder Austal has delivered the 14th Independence-class littoral combat ship (LCS) to the US Navy, from the company’s shipyard in Mobile, Alabama.
According to the shipbuilder, the future USS Savannah (LCS 28) was completed by Austal USA in just under three years, a full twelve months earlier than previous ships delivered under the same program.
Austal Limited chief executive officer Paddy Gregg said the delivery of LCS 28 highlighted Austal USA’s capabilities to deliver multiple, naval shipbuilding programs, on schedule and within budget.
“Savannah is the seventh ship delivered by Austal USA to the US Navy in just 2 years, which is an incredible achievement,” Gregg said.
“The Austal USA team have developed industry-leading efficiencies in Mobile, to construct both the Independence-class LCS and Spearhead-class EPF on schedule and within budget.”
The Independence-class LCS is a 127-meter high-speed trimaran designed for operation in near-shore environments, yet capable of open-ocean operation. It is designed to defeat asymmetric “anti-access” threats, such as mines, quiet diesel submarines and fast surface craft.
Five Independence-class LCS and two Spearhead-class expeditionary fast transport ships (EPF) are currently under construction at Austal USA; with two additional ships, LCS 38 and EPF 15 under contract and soon to commence construction.
Austal USA has recently also been awarded a concept and preliminary design contract for the US Navy’s Light Amphibious Warship (LAW), which would be manufactured on Austal USA’s new steel production line.