Fincantieri Marinette Marine to have largest shiplift in U.S.

Written by Nick Blenkey
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Photo illustration of the shiplift with the soon-to-be built USS Constellation.

Wisconsin shipbuilder Fincantieri Marinette Marine (FMM) has signed a contract with Pearlson Shiplift Corp., Miami, Fla., to design and build a state-of-the-art shiplift system. On completion, the shiplift system will be the largest in the U.S., with a length of approximately 500 feet and width of 82 feet wide.

FMM says the multi-million dollar project, as well as additional capital expenditures, delivers on the commitment it made to continue to modernize and expand their shipyard in support of the FFG(X)—now renamed Constellation class—frigate program and vessels larger than the Littoral Combat Ships currently being built at yard.

According to Pearlson, the shiplift provides a more controlled and gentle launch method and allows ships to be outfitted to near completion and tested inside climate-controlled facilities before being launched into the Menominee River.

The shiplift will give FMM the capability to launch and retrieve larger vessels that will be produced in the shipyard. This more controlled and gentle launch method allows future ships, like the Multi-Mission Surface Combatant (MMSC) and the recently named Constellation Class Frigates to be outfitted to near completion and tested inside climate-controlled facilities before being launched into the adjacent Menominee River.

Pearlson Shiplift Corp, has a technical team with over 60 years of experience in design, engineering and development of shiplift and transfer systems.

“The shiplift is one of our most important infrastructure projects,” said Dario Deste, President and CEO of Fincantieri Marine Group. “We are impressed with Pearlson’s capabilities and record of performance. They are an innovative American company who has pioneered the shiplift.”

Bryan Fraind, Vice President and COO of Pearlson Shiplift Corp. said: “We are very pleased to be associated with this prestigious shipyard upgrade and modernization project and the respected team of Fincantieri Marinette Marine. This strategic investment by FMM will mean that current and future generations, both in Wisconsin, and the U.S will benefit from a world-class facility which is capable of handling the next generation of U.S. Navy warships.”

The new shiplift system is scheduled to be complete in 2022.

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