Thursday, July 13, 2017

Steel cutting ceremony of the multipurpose amphibious unit (LHD or Landing Helicopter Dock) took place @ Fincantieri’s shipyard

via Fincantieri Press Release.
Trieste, July 12, 2017 – The steel cutting ceremony of the multipurpose amphibious unit (LHD or Landing Helicopter Dock) took place today at Fincantieri’s shipyard in Castellammare di Stabia.
The new unit will be delivered in 2022 and it falls within the renewal plan of the operational lines of the Italian Navy vessels, approved by the Government and Parliament and started in May 2015. The multi-year program for the renewal of the Italian Navy’s fleet foresees the construction, besides the LHD - whose works officially start today – of seven Multipurpose Offshore Patrol Ships (PPA), with other three in option, as well as the logistic support ship (LSS) “Vulcano”.
The LHD will be classified by RINA Services pursuant international conventions about prevention of pollution regarding the more traditional aspects, like the ones of the MARPOL Convention, as well as those not yet mandatory, as the Hong Kong Convention about ship recycling.

Vessel’s characteristics: LHD - Landing Helicopter Dock
The unit will be approx. 200 meters long with a maximum speed of 25 knots. It will be equipped with a combined diesel and gas turbine plant (CODOG) and will be able to accommodate on board over 1,000 people, of whom more than 700 military or civilian transported people.

The LHD's main mission is the transport of people, vehicles and loads of different kinds and in their transfer on land in port areas through on board systems and in not equipped areas with various kinds of vessels (such as the small LCM landing craft units with a load capacity up to 60 tons, four of which can be admitted, launched, and recovered through a flooded basin, located on the stern of the vessel).
Interesting.  The Italians have quietly built a pretty effective and impressive amphibious force...especially if you consider the size of the country.

Doing it just from memory (and I could be wrong) but when it comes to amphibious forces I'd rank them to be almost on par with the Brits...when it comes to amphibious shipping they're ahead.


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