Austal completes repair and maintenance work on Sea Fighter

seafighterIn conjunction with prime contractor BAE Systems Southeast Shipyards Alabama, Austal USA, has completed a  four month drydocking and shipyard availability for the Sea Fighter (FSF-1).

The Panama City, Fla., based Sea Fighter is an aluminum catamaran operated by the Office of Naval Research (ONR) that has been used to test technologies for the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) and Joint High Speed Vessel (JHSV) programs.

Under a very aggressive schedule, Austal workers installed a new Counter Measure Washdown (CMWD) System designed to help keep future Naval combatants operational in a nuclear, biological or chemical battle-space. Other Austal work items included the modification of ballast tanks and the installation of water jet skirts on both hulls.

Austal's pipe department installed a fuel centrifuge piping system that which will allow the crew the opportunity to remove fuel contaminants. Other work items included the manufacture of aluminum ladders and work platforms for the water jets, along with repair of the aluminum hull.

This work was completed on time and on budget.

Austal also provided technical support during successful sea trials in the Gulf of Mexico.

Austal USA's President and Chief Operating Officer, Joe Rella said: "The successful completion of the Sea Fighter availability speaks to the inherent advantages of utilizing the subject matter expert for repair and maintenance of the vessels they build. It was rewarding to see both shipyards work together in Mobile exploiting the synergies of our two side-by-side facilities. We hope the Navy will consider Mobile-based shipyards teamed with Austal USA for future support of the Navy's repair and maintenance activities that would require a drydock."

"One of the ways to obtain growth in tough economic times is through teaming and partnerships," said Vic Rhoades, Director and General Manager of BAE Systems Southeast Shipyards Alabama. "Completion of the Sea Fighter project is a shared success and a tribute to the highly-skilled men and women of both BAE Systems and Austal USA. The vessel spent a total of 91 days at BAE Systems' facility, including 72 days on dry dock. This project is a testament to both companies' commitment to generate additional business opportunities in the Mobile area."

March 8, 2012

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