Austal Limited has delivered the 17th Independence-variant littoral combat ship, the future USS Augusta to the United States Navy.
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The high speed, shallow-draft Independence-variant aluminium trimaran hull ship will be homeported at Naval Base San Diego after being built by Austal USA in Alabama.
Littoral combat ships (LCS) are used primarily in surface warfare, mine warfare, and anti-submarine warfare missions. Two more ships are scheduled for the Independence-variant LCS program with LCS 36 future USS Kingsville and LCS 38 USS Pierre.
Austal Limited chief executive officer Paddy Gregg said the delivery of Augusta, just five months after the vessel was christened in December 2022, highlights Austal USA’s productivity and efficiency in delivering multiple naval shipbuilding programs.
“The speed at which the Austal USA team are managing the completion and delivery of multiple, complex naval assets is truly impressive,” Gregg said.
“Already in 2023, Austal USA has delivered EPF-13, the autonomous-capable USNS Apalachicola and opened a huge new service facility in San Diego.
“Now, with the delivery of the future USS Augusta, we congratulate Austal USA on their continued focus on quality and efficiency and thank the team for another outstanding capability for the US Navy.”
Austal USA has also delivered 13 of 16 Spearhead Class expeditionary fast transport for the United States Navy. The company is also contracted to deliver four towing, salvage and rescue steel hull ships for the US Navy and up to 11 offshore patrol cutters for the United States Coast Guard.
In March this year, it was announced that the USS Jackson (LCS-6) and USS Montgomery (LCS-8) are part of a significant decommissioning plan laid out in a Report to Congress on the Annual Long-Range Plan for Construction of Naval Vessels for Fiscal Year 2024, prepared by the US Office of the Chief of Naval Operations.
Earlier this month, Austal Australia signed a three-year contract with Engineers Australia to support global best practice workforce credentialing and membership to all Australian-based engineering employees. Under the contract, Austal Australia has initially enrolled 55 of the company’s degree qualified, industry-experienced engineers into Engineering Australia’s Chartership.
“Austal has been a valued partner of Engineers Australia for many years, working with us to build strong development pathways for their engineering workforce,” Engineers Australia chief executive officer Romilly Madew said.
“The EWC partnership extends this relationship, benchmarking and aligning their workforce to this badge of global best practice, further strengthening their development pathway, engineering competencies, and their workforce’s global mobility within the Defence sector.”