Shipbuilding company Fincantieri has laid the keel for the Italian Navy's logistic support ship (LSS) vessel at Riva Trigoso shipyard, near Genoa.
Scheduled to be delivered to the Italian Navy in 2019, the vessel is being built as part of a €3.5bn fleet renewal plan contract awarded last year to Fincantieri, Italian defence group Finmeccanica and Raggruppamento Temporaneo di Impresa (RTI).
Under the contract, Fincantieri will build seven vessels, including six multipurpose offshore patrol ships (PPA), with four more in options, as well as one transport and landing vessel.
Construction works on the first LSS had already started in February this year with a steel cutting ceremony of the unit’s stern and bow sections.
Designed to provide logistics support to the fleet, the 165m-long LSS features a fully equipped hospital with operating rooms, radiology and analysis rooms, a dentist’s office and hospital rooms to cater to 12 seriously injured patients.
The vessel can operate at a speed of 20k and is fitted with 200 berths to accommodate crew and specialists, including inpatients.
It can ferry transport vessels used for diesel fuel, jet fuel, fresh water for emergency spare parts, food and ammunitions, as well as conduct at-sea repairs and maintenance work for other vessels.
The vessel will also be installed with complex defence systems and will serve as an intelligence and electronic war platform in future.