The US Navy’s new expeditionary fast transport (EPF) has been christened as Burlington at the Austal US shipyard in Mobile, Alabama.
The future USNS Burlington (T-EPF 10) represents the first vessel to be named in honour Vermont’s largest city.
It is one of 12 EPFs currently being built by Austal under a US Navy contract that comprises a total value of more than $1.9bn.
Military Sealift Command commander rear admiral Dee L Mewbourne said: “T-EPFs are operating around the world supporting maritime security operations, humanitarian assistance / disaster relief, logistics support, and multiple international and joint exercises.
“The EPF-class, characterised by speed, capacity, adaptability and innovation, is part of the navy the nation needs to support our National Defense Strategy.”
EPF vessels are commercial-based catamarans that feature an all-aluminium, shallow-draft hull.
They are capable of conducting intra-theatre personnel transportation and cargo lift operations.
The vessels are able to transport 600 short tonnes of military cargo for 1,200nm at an average speed of 35k.
In addition, EPF units can operate in shallow-draft ports and waterways, as well as interface with roll-on / roll-off discharge facilities and on / off load a combat-loaded Abrams main battle tank (M1A2).
The vessels are equipped with a flight deck to carry out helicopter operations and an off-load ramp that enables vehicles to drive off the vessel.
Austal has delivered a total of nine Spearhead-class EPFs to the US Navy to date.
The USNS City of Bismarck was previously delivered to the navy in late-2017.
The remaining two vessels, Puerto Rico (EPF 11) and Newport (EPF 12), are currently under construction at the company’s shipyard.