The US Navy has christened and launched a 12th dry cargo / ammunition ship, William McLean, at the General Dynamics NASSCO shipyard in San Diego, US.

William McLean, also known as T-AKE 12, has been designated as a US Naval ship (USNS) and is one of the 14 dry cargo / ammunition ships, which will be operated by the US Navy’s Military Sealift Command (MSC).

The 689ft-long ship has a displacement capacity of 42,000t and is capable of cruising at a speed of 20kt using a single-shaft, diesel-electric propulsion system.

The ship can carry two helicopters and crew, and is designed to operate independently for extended periods at sea.

Of the 14 ships, 11 will serve as combat logistics force (CLF) ships and the remaining three will be part of the Maritime Prepositioning Force.