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Austal USA delivers first littoral combat ship in 2020

Austal USA delivered its 11th littoral combat ship (LCS) to the U.S. Navy on Wednesday. The future USS Kansas City is the first LCS to be delivered this year.

“It’s a testament to the work our team does to provide highly capable and affordable ships on-time and on-budget,” said Austal USA President Craig Perciavalle. “What’s also incredible is that our team has the capacity to increase our rate of delivery while maintaining schedule and cost.”

A press release noted:

Upgrades on the LCS program continue to take shape both inline production and post-delivery. The Austal USA and General Dynamics Mission Systems team recently integrated a new over-the-horizon missile system capability onto the USS Gabrielle Giffords (LCS 10) prior to her deployment. Gabrielle Giffords and her sister ship, USS Montgomery (LCS 8), are currently deployed and meeting U.S. Navy operational requirements as more LCS prepare for deployment.

Five small surface combatants are presently under various stages of construction at Austal’s Alabama shipyard. The future USS Oakland (LCS 24) and USS Mobile (LCS 26) are preparing for sea trials. Assembly is underway on the future USS Savannah (LCS 28) and USS Canberra (LCS 30), and modules for the future USS Santa Barbara (LCS 32) are under construction in Austal’s module manufacturing facility. Three more LCS are under contract through LCS 38.

“The LCS program has become invaluable to the U.S. Navy fleet deploying ships from both the east and west coast this past year,” Perciavalle continued. “The Montgomery and Gabrielle Giffords accompanying the fleet in the Pacific are doing their part to strengthen maritime security and regional stability with every port visit and exercise they participate in with our Pacific allies.”

More than 700 suppliers in 40 states contribute to the Independence-variant LCS program.

LCS is a “fast, agile, focused-mission platform designed for operation in near-shore environments yet capable of open-ocean operation.” It is also equipped to defeat “asymmetric ‘ant-access’ threats such as mines, quiet diesel submarines and fast surface craft.”

In addition to the latest delivery of USS Kansas City, Austal is also under contract to build 14 Expeditionary Fast Transport vessels (EPF) for the U.S. Navy.

Austal USA is an advanced ship manufacturer headquartered in Mobile, Alabama, with operations in San Diego, Seattle, Portland and Singapore. Its headquarters and manufacturing facility are located on its state-of-the-art campus designed uniquely with moving assembly lines for module construction and guided by lean manufacturing principles.

Austal USA is positioned to support both commercial and government ship construction, as well as services and support worldwide. The company is under contract with the U.S. Navy to build the advanced small surface combatant Independence-variant littoral combat ship and the auxiliary ship expeditionary fast transport. With excellence awards in five consecutive years, Austal USA continues to be one of the safest shipyards in America and was ranked by Forbes as the 49th best midsize employer in the U.S.

Kyle Morris also contributes daily to Breitbart News. You can follow him on Twitter @RealKyleMorris.