Spearhead class JHSV/EPF during sea trials. Picture: Austal
USNS Choctaw County is a high speed, non-combatant intra-theatre support vessel, operated by US Military Sealift Command (USMSC), with capability to transport up to 312 embarked troops, 41 crew and 600 short tons of cargo (including motor vehicles and a medium lift helicopter) up to 1200 nautical miles at 35 knots. Highly manoeuvrable with a shallow (<4m) draft, the T-EPF is effective in both open seas (up to SS7) and littoral environments.
Operating under the US Navy 5th Fleet’s Commander, Task Force (CTF) 53 the Choctaw County will be utilised to accomplish a range of missions including maritime security, theatre security cooperation and crisis response.
"I'm thrilled to have Choctaw County in the 5th Fleet," said Capt. Edwin D. Kaiser, Commander of CTF 53. "The ship gives us tremendous capacity and operational flexibility."
Austal is delivering 10 x T-EPF’s for the US Navy under a contract worth over USD$1.6 billion; with 6 delivered and 4 under construction at Austal USA’s Mobile, Alabama shipyard. A further 2 x T-EPF’s have been funded and orders for these vessels are expected in 2016.
PACIFIC OCEAN (April 23, 2014) The littoral combat ships USS Independence (LCS 2), back, and USS Coronado (LCS 4) are underway in the Pacific Ocean. (U.S. Navy photo by Chief Mass Communication Specialist Keith DeVinney/Released)
Meanwhile, Austal’s Independence variant of the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) has successfully completed survivability tests in February 2016, with the USS Coronado designated ‘battle ready’ in preparation for forward deployment to the Western Pacific later in 2016.
The US Navy has now commissioned three 127m Independence variant LCS; designed by Austal and constructed in the company’s Mobile, Alabama shipyard. An additional six (6) LCS are currently under construction as part of a contract for 10 ships (with an option for an 11th vessel), valued at USD$3.5billion.
Austal’s Independence variant LCS features a unique trimaran hull that delivers both speed (up to 40 knots) and the largest flight deck of any US Navy surface ship, with hangars for two helicopters or UAV’s. As an ‘open architecture’ platform, the Independence variant LCS’ allows rapid interchangeability and operational flexibility to accomplish multiple missions, including mine warfare, anti-submarine warfare and surface warfare - with inherent capabilities to also support special operations and maritime interdiction activity.
- Press Release
- World Naval Forces
- World Naval Industry
- Our Other Websites