Austal kicks off construction of US Navy’s AFDM

Austal USA has started construction of the US Navy’s Auxiliary Floating Dry Dock Medium (AFDM) at the company’s Gulf Coast ship manufacturing facility.

Austal USA

The AFDM is a “Rennie”-type floating dry dock which means it has continuous wing walls and several sectional pontoons to provide the stability and displacement required to lift and submerge vessels from the water using buoyancy. 

It has a 18,000 LT lifting capacity and a clear deck working area of 90,800 square feet. The craft has an overall length of 694 feet, overall pontoon breadth of 157 feet, and a height of 65 feet from baseline to wing deck.  The vessel design incorporates features to improve operability and maintainability.

“This dry dock will be a first for Austal, but we’re up to the challenge,” Austal USA Vice President, New Construction Dave Growden said.

AFDM is the third program to begin construction on Austal USA’s state-of-the-art steel assembly line following T-ATS 11 and 12 – the first two of four U.S. Navy Towing, Salvage, and Rescue (T-ATS) ships the company is under contract to build. 

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