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US Navy ship arrives for repair at L&T shipyard in TN

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Chennai, Aug 08: In a leg-up to the Indo-US strategic partnership, US navy ship Charles Drew on Sunday arrived at the Larsen and Toubro shipyard at Kattupalli here for undergoing repairs and allied services.

According to an official release, the US Navy had awarded a contract to the L&T Shipyard for undertaking maintenance of the ship. The event signifies the capabilities of the country's shipyards in the global ship repairing market.

USNS Charles Drew (T-AKE 10) Dry Cargo/Ammunition Ship. U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Markus Castaneda.

Indian shipyards offer wide-ranging and cost-effective ship repair and maintenance services, using advanced maritime technology platforms.

United States' Military Sealift Command's Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship USNS Charles Drew provides critical support to the U.S. Navy fleet operating in the Indo-Pacific Region, it said.

In a first, US Navy Ship arrives in India for repair servicesIn a first, US Navy Ship arrives in India for repair services

Defence Secretary Ajay Kumar, Vice Chief of Naval Staff Vice Admiral SN Ghormade, Flag Officer Commanding Tamil Nadu & Puducherry Naval Area Rear Admiral S Venkat Raman and other senior officials of Ministry of Defence visited the shipyard to welcome the vessel.

Consul General of US Embassy in Chennai, Judith Ravin and Defence Attaché at the US Embassy at New Delhi Rear Admiral Michael Baker were also present.

USNS Charles Drew (T-AKE 10) Replenishment-at-Sea. U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Markus Castaneda.

Judith Ravin, U.S. Consul General in Chennai, said,''In April, at the U.S.-India 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue, US Secretary of State Blinken and Secretary of Defense Austin affirmed their intention to explore utilizing Indian shipyards for repairs on U.S. Navy vessels. This inaugural repair of a United States Naval Ship, the Charles Drew, conducted by the L&T Kattupalli shipyard, is a landmark development to be celebrated as a symbol of our strengthened U.S.-India partnership."

Rear Admiral Michael L. Baker, United States Defense Attaché to India and Senior Defense Official said,"Our shipping industries positively contribute to a free and open Indo-Pacific by partnering to deliver effective, efficient, and economical repair of military vessels."

USNS Charles Drew (T-AKE 10) Replenishment-at-Sea. U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Markus Castaneda.

All about U.S. Naval Dry Cargo Ship Charles Drew 

How is this ship called? 

United States' Military Sealift Command's Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship USNS Charles Drew. 

What is the role of the ship? 

USNS Charles Drew provides critical support to the U.S. Navy fleet operating in the Indo-Pacific Region. 

What types of support are provided? 

The ships of MSC's CLF (Military Sealift Command Combat Logistics Force) are the supply lines to U.S. Navy ships at sea. These ships provide virtually everything Navy ships need, including fuel, food, fleet ordnance and dry cargo, spare parts, mail, and other supplies.  

About ownership and operation... 

All CLF ships are government-owned and operated by U.S. Government civil service mariners. In addition to U.S. Navy ships, Military Sealift Command's Combat Logistics Force also resupplies international partners and allies operating in the Indo-Pacific Region. CLF ships enable the Navy fleet to remain at sea and combat ready for extended periods of time.   

Any other interesting facts about Charles Drew? 

Charles Drew is like a floating grocery store, gas station, hardware store and post office. The ship conducts "replenishments-at-sea" where it delivers critical supplies (food, fuel, spare parts -- and mail) to U.S. Navy ships. It delivers these important items to them so they can stay on station and can continue their mission. 

Length: 689 ft

Beam: 106 ft

Displacement: 41,000 tons, Speed 20kts

Draft: 30 ft

Speed: 20 knots

Crew: 53 Civilian

Load: 6,675 tons dry cargo, 1,716 tons refrigerated stores, 18,000 bbls cargo fuel

Designed to carry 63 percent more cargo than previous AE and AFS classes.
Landing/Attack Craft: Air Cap: Two VERTREP capable helicopters 

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