US Navy’s 1st John Lewis-class oiler conducts acceptance trials
USNS John Lewis (T-AO 205), the US Navy’s lead ship of its new class of fleet replenishment oilers, conducted acceptance trials last month.
Acceptance trials consist of a series of in-port and at-sea demonstrations that allow the navy and the shipbuilder, General Dynamics National Steel and Shipbuilding Company (NASSCO), to assess the ship’s systems and readiness prior to delivery to the navy. The vessel completed the initial builder’s trials in February this year.
The John Lewis-class T-AOs will be operated by Military Sealift Command to provide fuel and lubricating oil, and small quantities of fresh and frozen provisions, stores, and potable water to navy ships at sea, and fuel for the embarked aircraft.
The oilers feature the capacity to carry barrels of oil, a significant dry cargo capacity, aviation capability and a speed of 20 knots. NASSCO designed the new vessels with double hulls to protect against oil spills and strengthened cargo and ballast tanks, according to the navy. Under the contract, the company will design and construction six 226-meter-long oilers with a full load displacement of 49,850 tons.
NASSCO is currently in production on USNS Harvey Milk (T-AO 206), USNS Earl Warren (T-AO 207), and USNS Robert F. Kennedy (T-AO 208).
The future USNS Lucy Stone (T-AO 209) and USNS Sojourner Truth (T-AO 210) are under contract.
NASSCO is also in production of two expeditionary sea bases (ESB) – the future USS John L. Canley (ESB 6) and USS Robert E. Simanek (ESB 7).