Huntington Ingalls Industries recently announced the successful completion of builder’s trials on the amphibious assault ship Tripoli (LHA 7). The second ship in the America class spent four days at sea in the Gulf of Mexico, testing the ship’s main propulsion, combat and other systems before returning to HII’s Ingalls Shipbuilding division.
“Congratulations to the Navy and Ingalls team for a solid LHA 7 builder’s trials,” said Ingalls Shipbuilding President Brian Cuccias. “We have an excellent leadership team, and they will now be focusing on getting the ship ready for acceptance trials and delivery to the Navy. The flight deck modifications to support the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft provide an increased aviation capacity and demonstrate how an experienced team can evolve the platform to meet the current threats across the globe.”
Ingalls is currently the sole builder of large-deck amphibious warships for the U.S. Navy. The shipyard delivered its first amphibious assault ship, the Iwo Jima-class USS Tripoli (LPH 10), in 1966. Ingalls has since built five Tarawa-class ships, eight Wasp-class ships and the first in a new class of ships, USS America (LHA 6). The third ship in the America class, Bougainville (LHA 8), is currently under construction at the shipyard and will be the 16th large-deck amphibious ship built at Ingalls.
“We work with an amazing team of individuals who are committed to making each LHA better than the last,” said George S. Jones, Ingalls’ vice president of operations. “From our shipbuilders, test and trials crew, and our Navy Supervisor of Shipbuilding partners, there is never a doubt that when these warships go to sea for trials they go out with the confidence and dedication of our team behind them. We build these state-of-the-art warships for the men and women of the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps, and that is a responsibility our shipbuilders take great pride in, and that pride really showed during this trial.”
Like the lead ship in the class, Tripoli is designed for survivability with increased aviation capacity, including an enlarged hangar deck, realignment and expansion of the aviation maintenance facilities, a significant increase in available stowage for parts and support equipment, and increased aviation fuel capacity. Similar to its predecessors, the ship will be able to operate as the flagship for an expeditionary strike group.
Tripoli will be the third ship to bear the name that commemorates the capture of Derna in 1805 by a small force of Marines and approximately 370 soldiers from 11 other nations. The battle, memorialized in the Marines’ Hymn with the line “to the shores of Tripoli,” brought about a successful conclusion to the combined operations of the First Barbary War.