The U.S. Navy’s 12th Expeditionary Fast Transport (EPF) vessel, the future USNS Newport (T-EPF-12), was launched at Austal USA’s shipyard, February 20.
The launching of an EPF is a multi-step process. The ship modules are constructed in Austal’s manufacturing facility, then transported to the assembly bay. When ready for launch, the ship is translated by heavy lift machinery to a docking barge in the Mobile River and further translated onto a floating dry dock. From there, the dry dock is submerged and the ship is launched. The translation and launch takes place over the course of two days.
«We are excited to get Newport in the water, so we can shift focus to final outfitting and trials», said Tim Roberts, Strategic and Theater Sealift program manager, Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships. «EPFs increase our reach, improving our ability to sustain our Navy and Marine Corps forces around the globe».
EPFs are versatile, non-combatant, transport ships that are being used for high-speed transportation of troops, military vehicles, and equipment. The vessels support a variety of missions including overseas contingency operations, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, support of special operations forces, theater security cooperation activities and emerging joint sea-basing concepts.
EPFs are capable of transporting 600 short tons 1,200 NM/1,381 miles/2,222 km at an average speed of 35 knots/40 mph/65 km/h. Each vessel includes a flight deck to support day and night aircraft launch and recovery operations. The ships are capable of interfacing with roll-on/roll-off discharge facilities, as well as on/off-loading vehicles such as a fully combat-loaded Abrams Main Battle Tank.
The future USNS Newport (T-EPF-12) is on track to deliver later this year. Austal USA has also started construction of the future USNS Apalachicola (Е-EPF-13) and is under contract to build the future USNS Cody (Е-EPF-14).
As one of the Defense Department’s largest acquisition organizations, PEO Ships is responsible for executing the development and procurement of all destroyers, amphibious ships, special mission and support ships, and special warfare craft.
|Material||Hull and superstructure – aluminium alloy|
|Length overall||103 m/337.9 feet|
|Beam overall||28.5 m/93.5 feet|
|Hull draft (maximum)||3.83 m/12.57 feet|
|Area (with tie-downs)||1,863 m2/20,053 feet2|
|Clear Height||4.75 m/15.6 feet|
|Turning diameter||26.2 m/86.0 feet|
|ISO TEU (Twenty Equivalent Units) Stations||6 Interface Panels|
|Troop Berths||Permanent: 104|
|Galley and Messing||48|
|Main Engines||4 × MTU 20V8000 M71L Diesel Engines 4 × 9.1 MW|
|Gear boxes||4 × ZF 60000NR2H Reduction Gears|
|Waterjets||4 × Wartsila WLD 1400 SR|
|Average Speed||35 knots/40 mph/65 km/h @ 90% MCR with 635 mt (700 st) payload|
|Maximum Speed||43 knots/50 mph/80 km/h without payload|
|Maximum Transit Range||1,200 NM/1,381 miles/2,222 km|
|Self-Deployment Range||5,600 NM/6,444 miles/10,371 km|
|NAVAIR Level 1 Class 2 Certified Flight Deck for one helicopter|
|Centreline parking area for one helicopter|
|NAVAIR Level 1 class 4 Type 2 Certified VERTREP (Vertical Replenishment)|
|Helicopter Control Station|
|Active Ride Control||Transcom Interceptors|
|Foils: 3.24 m2/34.9 feet2 each, forward on inboard sides of demi-hulls|
|Vehicle Ramp||Articulated Slewing Stern Ramp|
|Straight aft to 45 Starboard|
|Telescoping Boom Crane||12.3 mt @ 15 m, 18.2 mt @ 10 m/13.6 Lt @ 49.2 feet, 20.1 Lt @ 32.8 feet|
USNS Spearhead (EPF-1), Delivered
USNS Choctaw County (EPF-2), Delivered
USNS Millinocket (EPF-3), Delivered
USNS Fall River (EPF-4), Delivered
USNS Trenton (EPF-5), Delivered
USNS Brunswick (EPF-6), Delivered
USNS Carson City (EPF-7), Delivered
USNS Yuma (EPF-8), Delivered
USNS City of Bismark (EPF-9), Delivered
USNS Burlington (EPF-10), Delivered
USNS Puerto Rico (EPF-11), Delivered
USNS Newport (EPF-12), Launched
USNS Apalachicola (EPF-13), Under construction
USNS Cody (EPF-14), Planned