Austal USA Enters Steel Shipbuilding Market

An artist’s conception of Austal USA’s new steel shipbuilding facility. AUSTAL USA

MOBILE, Ala. — Austal USA broke ground on its steel manufacturing line March 26, positioning the company to start steel production in April 2022, the company said in a release. This addition of steel capability ensures Austal USA will remain a major contributor to the U.S. shipbuilding industrial base.   

“This world-class steel manufacturing line is a treasure for the Gulf Coast, the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Coast Guard that will provide a much needed boost to the defense industrial base and our Nation’s defense,” said Rep. Jerry Carl, R-Alabama, the congressman for Alabama’s 1st District.  

The ceremony marked the start of a new era for Austal USA as the company adds steel shipbuilding capability to its growing business portfolio. 

“As demand for the greater and larger Navy and Coast Guard fleets grows, Austal USA is investing to meet those changing requirements,” said Rusty Murdaugh, the company’s interim president. “We’re investing in our people, we’re investing in our processes and we’re investing in our facilities and capabilities.” 

Just as Austal helped turn Mobile into the nation’s premier location for construction of aluminum ships, the company is poised to do the same for steel. During World War II, residents of Mobile built steel Liberty ships that were critical to the war effort. In the coming years, Austal will look to build and deliver steel ships needed by the U.S. Coast Guard and Navy. 

Founded on innovation, effectiveness and efficiency, Austal USA will bring its proven lean manufacturing processes and facility design to the steel shipbuilding market. These processes have helped deliver 24 ships to the Navy in the last nine years.