Mobile-based Austal USA launched its second littoral combat ship, Coronado, in January, using its new launch system for the second time.
The 127-meter ship was lifted up three feet from the assembly bay and moved into a moored dry dock. Next, with the aid of tugs, the dry dock was set afloat and towed downriver to BAE Systems Southeast Shipyard, where it was floated free from the drydock, then towed back to Austal for final outfitting before sea trials. The new launch system saves time and money, Austal said.
Like the first Austal LCS, Coronado is a trimaran with a long central hull that houses the ship’s mission bay and two smaller side hulls. The top of the ship is a flight deck.
Austal is partnering with General Dynamics on the LCS project.
By Nedra Bloom