The US Navy's new joint high-speed vessel 5 (JHSV 5), USNS Trenton, has successfully completed acceptance trials in the Gulf of Mexico, marking a major milestone prior to its delivery.
The trials were conducted by the US Navy and involved comprehensive testing of the Austal-built USNS Trenton's major systems and equipment.
Austal chief executive officer Andrew Bellamy said: "The JHSV programme is in a mature, efficient phase of construction and USNS Trenton is the latest example of Austal's ability to design and construct high-quality defence vessels for the US Navy."
Austal is building ten such vessels at its shipyard at Mobile, Alabama, under a $1.6bn contract from the US Navy.
USNS Brunswick (JHSV 6) is expected to be launched later this year, while USNS Carson City (JHSV 7) and USNS Yuma (JHSV 8) are at various stages of construction.
The 338ft-long USNS Trenton can accommodate 104 personnel and includes airline-style seating for 312 members. It will be operated by the navy's military sealift command with a core crew of 22 civilian mariners and military mission personnel boarding when required.
With 20,000ft² open-mission and flight decks, JHSVs can support day and night launch and recovery missions as well as fast, intra-theatre transportation of troops, military vehicles, supplies and equipment.
The vessels can be deployed for a range of operations, including overseas contingency missions, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, and support for special operations forces and emerging joint sea-basing concepts.
Image: USNS Trenton during acceptance trials. Photo: courtesy of Austal.