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US Navy christens Navajo class towing salvage and rescue ship USNS Navajo.

| 2023

According to information published by the U.S. DoD on August 25, 2023, the U.S. Navy recently christened the Navajo-class towing, salvage, and rescue ship, the USNS Navajo (T-ATS 6) in a ceremony.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Navajo class towing salvage and rescue ship USNS Navajo. (Picture source: US DoD)

Highlighting the event was a traditional Navy ritual. Ms. Jocelyn Billy, of the Navajo Nation and Miss Navajo Nation 2006, christened the ship by breaking a bottle of sparkling wine across its bow. Billy, who is also a staunch advocate for Navajo Nation veterans, added a unique touch to the christening.

The USNS Navajo represents a significant upgrade for the Navy, set to replace the existing Powhatan-class T-ATF fleet ocean tugs and Safeguard-class T-ARS rescue and salvage ships.

Operated by the Navy’s Military Sealift Command, the vessel is the pioneer in the Navajo-class – a new generation of multi-mission ships. These ships will support a variety of operations, from towing and rescue to humanitarian assistance, oil spill response, and broad search and surveillance operations employing unmanned underwater vehicles (UUV) and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV).

With a displacement of 5,110 long tons and a length of 263 feet, they are powered by two Wartsila 8L32 diesel engines, boasting 6,308 Hp each. The ships can reach speeds of up to 15.1 knots and have a range of 8,170 nautical miles. They will accommodate a crew of 42 sailors.

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