Construction starts on US Navy’s first Flight II amphibious transport dock

Global engineering and defence technologies provider Huntington Ingalls Industries revealed that the company’s Ingalls Shipbuilding division has authenticated the keel of the new San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock, Harrisburg (LPD 30).

The keel ceremony marked the start of construction for Harrisburg by welding the initials of the ship’s sponsor into a ceremonial plate.

Harrisburg is being built at Ingalls Shipbuilding and will be the first Flight II amphibious ship in the San Antonio class. LPD Flight II is the next generation amphibious ship to replace Whidbey Island (LSD 41) and Harpers Ferry (LSD 49) classes of dock landing ships.

The company has delivered 11 San Antonio-class ships to the US Navy and has three more under construction.

The San Antonio class is a major part of the navy’s 21st century amphibious assault force. The 208.4-meter-long, 32-meter-wide ships are used to embark and land Marines, their equipment and supplies ashore via air cushion or conventional landing craft and amphibious assault vehicles, augmented by helicopters or vertical takeoff and landing aircraft such as the MV-22 Osprey.

The ships support a Marine Air Ground Task Force across the spectrum of operations, conducting amphibious and expeditionary missions of sea control and power projection to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief missions.

Photo: US Navy