The US Navy’s future amphibious transport dock, USS Portland (LPD 27), successfully completed Builder’s Trials on Jun. 30.
The ship returned to the Huntington Ingalls Industries’ shipyard in Pascagoula, Mississippi, following four days underway.
“Builder’s Trials is the Navy’s first opportunity to assess the operational readiness of the ship,” said Capt. Brian Metcalf, LPD 17 class program manager, Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships. “Portland performed very well throughout the at-sea and in port testing. We’ll now focus on preparing the ship for Acceptance Trials later this summer.”
Builder’s Trials incorporates a series of tests and at-sea demonstrations in an effort to prepare the ship for final demonstrations with the U.S. Navy’s Board of Inspection and Survey. At-sea tests conducted during LPD 27’s trials included full power runs, self-defense detect-to-engage exercises, evaluations of key combat and communications systems, rapid ballast/de-ballast operations, steering checks, and anchor handling demonstrations.
LPD 27 will be the eleventh ship of the LPD 17 San Antonio class to join the Fleet. The ship is scheduled to deliver later this summer. Following in USS John P. Murtha (LPD 26)’s footsteps, which commissioned in October 2016, LPD 27 will commission in the spring of 2018. LPD 27 is named for the city of Portland, Oregon, and follows the World War II heavy cruiser CA 33 and the amphibious ship LSD 37 as the third U.S. Navy ship to bear the name Portland. Portland, Oregon will host the commissioning ceremony and the ship will be homeported in San Diego, California.
The principal mission of LPD 17 San Antonio-class ships is to deploy combat and support elements of Marine Expeditionary Units and Brigades. With the capability of transporting and debarking air cushion or conventional landing craft and augmented by helicopters or MV-22 vertical take-off and landing aircraft, these ships support amphibious assault, special operations, and expeditionary warfare missions. “LPD 27 is on track to join her sister ships in performing missions around the world,” said Metcalf. The first ten LPD 17 Class ships have deployed for a combined nineteen times.