USNS Cesar Chavez successfully completes integrated acceptance trials

5 October 2012 (Last Updated October 5th, 2012 03:50)

The US Navy's 14th and final Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo-ammunition ship, USNS Cesar Chavez (T-AKE 14), has successfully completed its integrated acceptance trials.

USNS Cesar Chavez

The US Navy's 14th and final Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo-ammunition ship, USNS Cesar Chavez (T-AKE 14), has successfully completed its integrated acceptance trials.

Navy Program Executive Office (PEO) Auxiliary Ships, Small Boats and Craft programme manager Frank McCarthey said: "This ship trial again demonstrates the maturity of this class, the many lessons learned incorporated, and significant production efficiencies NASSCO has achieved across the class."

Completion of the four-day single integrated trials marks a milestone prior to being delivered to the US Navy's Military Sealift Command (MSC) later in 2012.

General Dynamics (GD) NASSCO was awarded a contract by the US Navy to construct 14 T-AKE ships for a total value of $3.7bn.

"This ship trial again demonstrates the maturity of this class, the many lessons learned incorporated, and significant production efficiencies NASSCO has achieved across the class."

Of the 14 ships, the US Navy will operate 11 as CLF ships, while the remaining three will be part of the maritime prepositioning force.

Capable of cruising at a maximum speed of 20k with a beam of 106ft, the 689ft-long cargo-ammunition ships can be deployed to operate independently at extended periods at sea.

In addition to transporting humanitarian assistance and disaster relief supplies, the T-AKE vessels will be used to ferry cargo, ammunition and other equipment equal to a capacity of more than 10,000t.

Powered by a single-shaft, diesel-electric propulsion system, 42,000t T-AKE frigates are classified as combat logistics force (CLF) ships to replace ageing Kilauea-class ammunition ships and Mars- and Sirius-class combat stores ships for the navy.

The US Navy took delivery of USNS Medgar Evers (T-AKE 13) from GD NASSCO earlier in 2012.


Image: USNS Cesar Chavez during its christening ceremony. Photo: courtesy of General Dynamics.