Austal Delivers Sixth Expeditionary Fast Transport

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By MarEx 2016-01-18 04:53:15

Austal USA delivered the U.S.’s sixth Expeditionary Fast Transport vessel, USNS Brunswick (EPF 6), to the U.S. Navy on January 14, 2016.

The Expeditionary Fast Transport (EPF) program, formerly named the Joint High Speed Vessel (JHSV) program, provides the Navy with a high-speed intra-theater transport capability. The Brunswick is a 338-foot long aluminum catamaran capable of transporting 600 tons 1,200 nautical miles at an average speed of 35 knots, and is designed to operate in austere ports and waterways, providing added flexibility to U.S. warfighters worldwide. The ship's flight deck can also support flight operations for a wide variety of aircraft, including a CH-53 Super Stallion.

“We’re proud to deliver yet another great ship to the U.S. Navy fleet,” Austal USA President Craig Perciavalle said. “The five Expeditionary Fast Transport vessels in service today have already proven to be a valuable resource for our nation and we’re excited to deliver another ship that will add to that global capability.”

USNS Spearhead (EPF 1) was delivered in 2012 and has already logged over 100,000 nautical miles supporting operations from Africa to the Pacific and South America. Her four follow-on sister ships have also been put to use around the globe supporting humanitarian and combat operations.

“The EPF program is very mature thanks to the hard work and dedication to excellence of the amazing shipbuilders here at Austal USA,” Perciavalle said. “The Austal team is delivering incredible ships for our nation’s defense while further establishing Austal USA as a major defense contractor.”  

The delivery marks the sixth EPF ship delivered to the Navy as part of a 10-ship, $1.6 billion block-buy contract.

Upon delivery of USNS Brunswick, there will be three Spearhead-class EPFs under construction at Austal’s Mobile, Ala. shipyard. The future USNS Carson City (EPF 7) was christened today, January 16, and is slated to launch early next week. Modules for the future USNS Yuma (EPF 8) and USNS Bismarck (EPF 9) are under construction in Austal’s module manufacturing facility with the construction of Burlington (EPF 10) scheduled to begin in early 2016. EPF 11 and 12 have been fully funded by Congress in the 2015 and 2016 Omnibus Appropriations Bills. The Navy awarded Austal a $54 million contract in October to fund long lead materials for EPF 11.

In addition to the EPF program, Austal is also under contract to build Independence-variant Littoral Combat Ships (LCS) for the U.S. Navy. Three LCS have been delivered while an additional six are in various stages of construction.

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