Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri held a steel cutting ceremony Castellammare di Stabia shipyard on July 20, marking the official start of construction of the Italian Navy’s second Vulcano-class logistic support ship (LSS).
The yet-to-be-named ship is being built under a a 410 million euro contract option from December last year, under which the ship will be delivered by 2025.
According to Fincantieri, the defense ministry also has an option to order a third ship in the class.
Work on the second unit began after the Italian Navy took delivery of ITS Vulcano in March 2021. The ship had initially been scheduled for delivery in 2019, but a fire outbreak in July 2018 severely impacted the delivery schedule.
The LSS is one of several ships Fincantieri is delivering as part of Italy’s Naval Act program that is aimed at safeguarding the country’s capacity to defend its seas. The vessels currently being built include seven multi-purpose offshore patrol vessels (PPA) – the first of which was delivered in March – and the Trieste landing helicopter dock (LHD).
The LSS design is also serving as the basis of the French FLOTLOG program (Flotte logistique), which will deliver four ships in the class for the French Navy. Fincantieri is delivering forward sections of the ships under the program.
Vulcano and sister ships combine capacity to transport and transfer liquids (diesel fuel, jet fuel, fresh water) and solids (emergency spare parts, food and ammunitions) with four replenishment stations abeam and one astern.
The 193-meter-long vessels will be equipped with a hospital and healthcare capabilities with operating rooms, radiology and analysis rooms, a dentist’s office and hospital rooms that will be capable of hosting up to 17 seriously injured patients.