Ingalls Completes Builder’s Trials of 13th San Antonio Transport Dock

HII’s Ingalls Shipbuilding subsidiary has completed builder’s trials for the US Navy’s 13th San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock, the USS Richard M. McCool Jr. (LPD 29).

Held in the Gulf of Mexico, the testing involved the demonstration of all the ship’s systems in preparation for additional evaluations before its delivery to the service in spring.

The contract for the LPD 29’s construction was awarded to the company in 2018.

“Our shipbuilders have worked hard to get LPD 29 to sea,” Ingalls Shipbuilding Program Manager Davianne Stokes stated.

“We are absolutely dedicated to get this important asset into the hands of our Navy and Marine Corps partners.”

San Antonio-Class Program

The US Department of Defense launched the San Antonio program in the late 1990s to replace several aging LPDs, including the Austin, Anchorage, Newport, and Charleston fleets.

The new warships, some already operational, are designed to embark, transport, and land maritime units for expeditionary missions.

San Antonio ships are also used to assist humanitarian efforts in addition to military tasks.

US Navy's 13th San Antonio-class vessel, the USS Richard M. McCool Jr. (LPD 29)
US Navy’s 13th San Antonio-class vessel, the USS Richard M. McCool Jr. (LPD 29). Photo: Ingalls Shipbuilding

Each vessel measures 684 feet (208 meters) long and can carry up to 600 personnel, landing crafts, amphibious assault vehicles, and tiltrotor aircraft.

The platforms are equipped with machine guns, missile launchers, and vertical launch systems.

Recent Progress

Ingalls finalized the acceptance trials of the 12th San Antonio amphibious transport ship earlier this month. Also set to be delivered this year, the USS Fort Lauderdale (LPD 28) passed all validations required by the navy’s Board of Inspection and Survey over several days.

In 2023, the firm laid the keel of the 15th San Antonio platform at its facility in Mississippi. Ingalls received a $1.3-billion contract to build the 16th vessel the same year.

In 2022, the US Senate Appropriations Committee proposed a budget to build a 17th San Antonio-class transport dock for the US Navy.

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