Building on a heritage in aluminium fast ferry design and construction, Austal (Hall D, Stand 283) is meeting emerging naval requirements for high-speed transport and logistics support craft.
The company’s Henderson yard in Western Australia recently delivered the second of two 72m High Speed Support Vessels (HSSVs) to the Royal Navy of Oman (RNO). Separately, the Austal USA business based in Mobile, Alabama, has now received contracts for a total of 12 Expeditionary Fast Transport vessels for the US Navy (USN).
Austal received a US$124.9 million contract from Oman in March 2014 for the design and build of the two HSSVs, plus an integrated logistics support package. Construction began in August 2014, with first-of-class RNOV Al Mubshir delivered in May this year.
Austal announced the delivery of sister vessel RNOV Al Naasir in early September.
With a large, 900m2 vehicle deck, seating capacity for 260 embarked troops and a top speed of 38kt, the all-aluminium HSSV offers a range of capabilities to support naval operations, including: helicopter operations; humanitarian and disaster relief; rapid deployment of military personnel and cargo; and search and rescue.
The HSSV design is derived from the proven 103m Expeditionary Fast Transport vessel previously developed by Austal for the USN.
In September, Austal USA was awarded a US$326 million contract for the design and construction of a further two Expeditionary Fast Transport vessels (EPF 11 and EPF 12) for the USN. This contract, on top of a 10-ship block-buy contract awarded in 2008, extends Austal USA’s contracted production schedule into 2022.
To date, Austal USA has delivered seven Expeditionary Fast Transports, with five now deployed by the Military Sealift Command to support USN fleets around the world. Capable of a speed of up to 35kt, the design features a 1,800m2 cargo deck, a flight deck able to embark helicopters up to MH-53 size, and airline-style seating for more than 300 embarked troops.