Australian shipbuilder Austal has delivered the seventh vessel in the Independence-variant Littoral combat ship (LCS) class to the US Navy.
The future USS Manchester is the second LCS delivered to the Navy by Austal in less than six months, following the USS Omaha (LCS 12) commissioning, which took place in San Diego earlier this year.
“We’re very happy to be delivering another LCS to the US fleet and the efficient and reliable delivery of these ships is a testament to the incredible skill and hard work of the shipbuilding professionals at Austal USA,” Austal CEO, David Singleton said.
“The technology we have invested in Mobile allows Austal USA to operate with unmatched efficiency which when combined with our skilled workforce offers a world leading solution to build for the United States Navy and support their planned expansion to a 355-ship fleet.
“Our LCS program is also a significant economic undertaking; more than 900 suppliers in 41 states contribute to the program and this supplier base supports tens of thousands of jobs.
“Six LCS remain under construction at Austal’s Alabama shipyard and I am confident Austal will continue to deliver these vessels with the efficiency and reliability we have become known for.”
Assembly is underway on Cincinnati (LCS 20) and Kansas City (LCS 22) and modules for Oakland (LCS 24) and Mobile (LCS 26) are under construction.
Construction on LCS 28, recently named Savannah and LCS 30, recently named Canberra is to begin later this year.
Austal is also under contract to build 12 Expeditionary Fast Transport vessels (EPF) for the US Navy with nine vessels delivered so far.