HII’s Ingalls Shipbuilding division announced the successful completion of acceptance sea trials for the amphibious transport dock Richard M. McCool Jr. (LPD 29) in the Gulf of Mexico. This vessel marks the final transition ship of Flight I before Ingalls transitions into serial production of the LPD Flight II line.

In a collaborative effort involving shipbuilders, the U.S. Navy, and industry partners, the trial demonstrated the ship’s capabilities, including running at full power and executing precise steering maneuvers. Main propulsion comes from four Colt-Pielstick diesel engines producing 40,000 hp. The 25,000-ton vessel is capable of 22 knots.

According to a statement from HII, the Ingalls’ test and trials team worked closely with the U.S. Navy’s Board of Inspection and Survey to validate the ship’s readiness for operational deployment. Following the successful trials, the team will now focus on final finish work for the San Antonio-class ship, ensuring it meets all specifications and standards before delivery to the U.S. Navy.

Ingalls Shipbuilding continues its commitment to naval construction, having delivered 12 San Antonio-class ships, with three LPDs currently under construction:

  • Richard M. McCool Jr. (LPD 29): The final transition ship.
  • Harrisburg (LPD 30): The first Flight II LPD.
  • Pittsburgh (LPD 31): Part of the ongoing San Antonio-class shipbuilding program.

Additionally, in March 2023, Ingalls was awarded a modification contract for the detail design and construction of Philadelphia (LPD 32), the 16th ship in the San Antonio class and the third LPD Flight II.

Richard R. McCool Jr. (LPS 29) docked at HII's Ingalls Shipbuilding following a successful acceptance trial. March 1, 2024. HII photo.

The versatile San Antonio-class ships can support various missions, including amphibious assault, special operations, and expeditionary warfare. They operate independently or as part of an Amphibious task force.

Ben Hayden is a Maine resident who grew up in the shipyards of northern Massachusetts. He can be reached at (207) 842-5430 and [email protected].

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