The U.S. Navy’s second aviation-centric amphibious assault ship, USS Tripoli (LHA 7), was launched on May 1 in Mississippi.
Prior to launch, the America-class ship was translated from land to the dry dock at Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) shipyard on April 9.
“It was probably the most well-executed translation event that we’ve seen on a larger ship,” said Cmdr. Randy Slaff, LHA program manager’s representative with Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Gulf Coast (SUPSHIP-GC).
The translation required 247 jacking and pallet cars to support the displacement of the ship and ensure even distribution throughout. The translation successfully completed following 19 hours of continuous work.
Following the translation, Tripoli was successfully launched on May 1 after the dry-dock was flooded to submerge the ship and allow it to float off for the first time.
Compared to previous amphibious assault ships, the design of America-class ships features several enhanced aviation capabilities which include an enlarged hangar deck, realignment and expansion of the aviation maintenance facilities, a significant increase in available stowage of parts and equipment and an increased aviation fuel capacity.
Tripoli will be able to accommodate F-35Bs, MV-22B Osprey tiltrotor aircraft, and a complement of Navy and Marine Corps helicopters.
The ship is planned to be christened later this year with delivery planned for late 2018.