USS America (LHA 6), the US Navy’s newest and most technologically advanced amphibious assault ship, was commissioned during a formal ceremony at Pier 30/32 during San Francisco Fleet Week, Oct. 11.
During the ceremony, Adm. Harry B. Harris, commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet, commended the crew for their performance during acceptance trials and sailing around South America.
Secretary of the Navy the Honorable Ray Mabus spoke of the importance of having a ship named America join the fleet:
“This ship, forged in a shipyard in my home state of Mississippi, with components and systems and parts manufactured all across this great country, is a symbol of the long and historic links between the citizens of this country and our Navy and Marine Corps who defend them.”
“Having a ship named the America, sailing the world’s oceans, defending freedom and peace and helping those in need, as we have for more than two centuries, is crucial to America and to our Navy and Marine Corps.”
America is the first ship of its class and the fourth ship named “America.” America weighs 44,971-tons, is 844 feet in length and has an overall beam of 106 feet. It’s equipped with a fuel-efficient, hybrid electric propulsion system, which is an energy initiative designed to give the ship the benefit of increased range, endurance, and time on station, enhancing its combat capability. It also provides greater flexibility in scheduling refueling and reduces maintenance costs.
Press Release, October 12, 2014; Image: US Navy