Kamis, Agustus 13, 2009

USS San Antonio Sets Sail Following Repairs

USS San Antonio, the US Navy,s first in class Amphibious transport dock, has set on its maiden deployment following last minute repairs to defective equipment, the 25,885 ton warship left Norfolk Virginia, on 28 August two days later than planned prior to joining the Iwo Jima Expeditionary Strike Group in the north Atlantic Ocean.
Twenty four hours before the vessel was due to depart, crew members found that seven bolts in one of the stern gate's hydraulic arms were broken, according to Paul Taylor, spokesman for Naval Surface Force Atlantic.
USS San Antonio the first of a class of eight ships was launched at Northop Grumman Ships system's Avondale, Louisiana, yard in July 2003 and commisioned in January 2006 after difficulties in the design phase had led to a two year delay in its delivery date.
The new class is designed to control and support landing forces disembarking by LCAC hovercraft, helicopter or MV-22 Osprey tilt rotor aircraft, it has a lift capability of 720 embarked marines with 24,000 sq ft of deck space for vehicles and 34,000 cu ft of cargo space below decks.The well deck can carry two LCACs or one landing craft Utility, or 14 Expeditionary Fighting Vehicles, while the hanger can accommodate two CH-46 Helicopter or one CH-53 Helicopter or one MV-22, there is also a 24 bed medical facility.
The launch and commisioning of the second, third and fourth San Antonio class ships was delayed owing to shipyard damage caused by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Ships two (USS New Orleans) and three (USS Mesa Verde) were commissioned in March and December 2007. Ship four (Green Bay) cleared the Navy's Board of Inspection and Survey in August 2008 and scheduled to commission 0n 24 January 2009.

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