The U.S. Navy christened its newest Expeditionary Fast Transport (EPF), the future USNS City of Bismarck (T-EPF-9), during a 10 a.m. CDT ceremony Saturday, May 13, at the Austal USA shipyard in Mobile, Alabama.
The future USNS City of Bismarck, designated T-EPF 9, will be the first ship in naval service to honor the city of Bismarck, the capital of the state of North Dakota.
The principal speaker was Air Force General Darren McDew, commander, U.S. Transportation Command. The Honorable Jane Harman, former congresswoman from California, served as the ship’s sponsor. In a time-honored Navy tradition, she christened the ship by breaking a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow.
«We are honored that former Congresswoman Harman will serve as sponsor for the newest ship in our fleet», said the Honorable Sean Stackley, acting secretary of the U.S. Navy. «She has had a distinguished career working to improve our nation’s security and her relationship with Bismarck and its crew will be a continuation of those efforts».
The EPF is a shallow draft, all aluminum, commercial-based catamaran capable of intra-theater personnel and cargo lift providing combatant commanders high-speed sealift mobility with inherent cargo handling capability and agility to achieve positional advantage over operational distances.
EPF is designed to transport 600 short tons/544.3 metric tons of military cargo 1,200 nautical miles/1,381 miles/2,222 km at an average speed of 35 knots/40 mph/65 km/h. The ship is capable of operating in shallow-draft ports and waterways, interfacing with roll-on/roll-off discharge facilities, and on/off-loading a combat-loaded Abrams Main Battle Tank (M1A2).
The EPF will include a flight deck for helicopter operations and an off-load ramp that will allow vehicles to quickly drive off the ship. EPF’s shallow draft (under 15 feet/4.57 m) will further enhance littoral operations and port access. This makes the EPF an extremely flexible asset for support of a wide range of operations including maneuver and sustainment, relief operations in small or damaged ports, flexible logistics support, or as the key enabler for rapid transport.
|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 Bismark (EPF-9), Christened
USNS Burlington (EPF-10), Under construction
USNS Puerto Rico (EPF-11), Under construction
USNS EPF-12, On order
USNS EPF-13, On order