The US Navy’s Military Sealift Command received its fourth expeditionary sea base, future USNS Hershel “Woody” Williams, from General Dynamics NASSCO on February 22.
The delivery took place after the vessel completed sea trials which started January 17, 2018.
Construction of the USNS Hershel “Woody” Williams began October 2015 and involved more than 21,000 tons of steel.
The 784-foot-long ship’s designs enables servicemen and women to carry out an array of missions including air mine counter measures, counter-piracy operations, maritime security operations, humanitarian aid, disaster relief missions, Marine Corps crisis response and more. MH-53 and MH-60 helicopters, and MV-22 tilt-rotor aircraft are all supported.
“It’s a privilege to build a ship reflecting the strength, courage and dedicated service of the United States Marine Corps and Woody Williams,” said Kevin Graney, president of General Dynamics NASSCO. “From design through production, the NASSCO team worked tirelessly to make this ship worthy of Woody’s name, while upholding the highest standards of quality and innovation.”
Delivery follows the successful completion of integrated sea trials. From January 15 to 19, the NASSCO team worked alongside government personnel to test the ship’s systems and ensure its readiness for delivery to the Navy. Testing included calibration of the ship’s navigational and propulsion systems, and demonstrations of the ship’s anchor handling, fire fighting and damage control, aviation, navigation and communication equipment.
The previous three ships in the class NASSCO has delivered to the Navy are USNS Montford Point (ESD 1), USNS John Glenn (ESD 2) and USNS Lewis B. Puller (ESB 3). Construction of ESB 5, the future USNS Miguel Keith, is currently 60 percent complete and will be delivered to the Navy in March 2019.