The future USNS CHOCTAW COUNTY (JHSV 2) was set into the water in Mobile, Alabama over a two-day period.
The all-aluminum, 1,600-metric ton ship, under construction at Austal USA, was lifted by Goldhofer self-propelled modular transporters (SPMTs) almost three feet in the air and rolled on Sept. 30 approximately 400 feet onto a moored deck barge adjacent to the assembly bay.
The barge, seen here with the tug MOBILE POINT, was towed a half mile to BAE System’s Southeast Shipyard in Mobile, where the CHOCTAW COUNTY was transferred to the floating drydock DRYDOCK ALABAMA, moored in a a deep part of Mobile Bay. The drydock was flooded on Oct. 1, allowing the new high speed vessel to be floated off. The ship was then towed back to Austal USA’s shipyard across from downtown Mobile for final outfitting.
The CHOCTAW COUNTY is scheduled for delivery to the U.S. Navy early next year. The 10 ships of this class will be operated by the Military Sealift Command for the U.S. military.
Photos courtesy Austal USA
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