The future USS Savannah (LCS 28) successfully completed acceptance trials in the Gulf of Mexico recently, Alabama’s Austal USA announced on Friday.
LCS 28, an Independence-variant littoral combat ship, is the fourth Austal-built ship for the U.S. Navy to complete acceptance trials in the last year, despite the global COVID-19 pandemic. The USS Savannah was built at Austal’s world-class campus in Mobile.
“It’s always exciting to see these great ships return from the Gulf after a successful sea trial event,” Austal USA interim president Rusty Murdaugh stated. “Working together with our Navy teammates Austal’s highly talented shipbuilders have prepared another combat ship for delivery and we look forward to handing her over to the Navy soon so she can join her sister ships on the West Coast preparing for deployment.”
Acceptance trials involve the execution of intense comprehensive tests by the Austal-led industry team while underway, which demonstrate to the Navy the successful operation of the ship’s major systems and equipment. This is the last significant milestone before delivery of the ship, which is scheduled for later this summer.
The Independence-variant LCS is a high-speed, shallow-draft, focused-mission ship capable of operating independently or in a group. These ships are designed to defeat growing littoral threats and provide access and dominance along coastal waters, yet capable of open-ocean operation. A fast, maneuverable and networked surface-combatant, LCS provides the required warfighting capabilities and operational flexibility to execute focused missions such as surface warfare, mine warfare and anti-submarine warfare.
Austal USA’s LCS program in Mobile is at full-rate production and continuing its momentum, with five ships currently under construction including the Savannah. The future USS Canberra (LCS 30) was launched in March and is now preparing for trials. Final assembly is underway on the future USS Santa Barbara (LCS 32) and future USS Augusta (LCS 34). Construction began on the future USS Kingsville (LCS 36) earlier this year.
Meanwhile, USS Oakland (LCS 24) was recently commissioned and has joined eleven other Independence-variant LCS homeported in San Diego. USS Mobile (LCS 26) was commissioned May 22 in its namesake city.
Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn