MOBILE, Ala. — Austal celebrated the christening of expeditionary fast transport (EPF) the future USNS Puerto Rico (EPF 11) with a ceremony at its state-of-the-art shipbuilding facility Nov. 10, the company said in a release. Puerto Rico is the 11th of 12 EPFs Austal has under contract with the U.S. Navy with a combined value of over $1.9 billion.
“Austal is excited to christen another amazing ship,” said Austal USA President Craig Perciavalle. “Puerto Rico is one step closer to joining her sister ships in supporting important missions across the globe.”
Nine Spearhead-class EPFs have been delivered and are serving as an affordable solution to fulfilling the Military Sealift Command’s requirements worldwide. The future USNS Burlington is scheduled for delivery to the Navy later this month and two more EPFs, including EPF 11, are under construction at Austal’s Mobile shipyard. Austal also received instruction from the Navy to order long lead-time materials for EPF 13 in October.
“Congratulations to the incredible Navy – Industry team for achieving this important milestone,” Perciavalle said. “You should be proud of the important service you’re providing our country.”
In addition to being in full-rate production for the EPF program, Austal is also the Navy’s prime contractor for the Independence-variant of the littoral combat ship (LCS) program. Austal has delivered nine LCSs, while an additional six are in various stages of construction.