Eleventh In Series Of 16 Fleet Oilers Under Construction At Avondale Christened USNS Guadalupe

The USNS Guadalupe (T-AO- 200), the 11th in a series of 16 fleet oilers under construction at the Shipyards Division of Avondale Industries, was recently christened during ceremonies held at the yard in New Orleans, La.

The Guadalupe and her sister ships in the T-AO Class are 667 feet long by 97 feet wide, with a maximum draft of 36 feet. Their primary mission is to transport fuel oils from shore depots to combatants and support forces under way. The ships also carry limited fleet freight, cargo, water, mail and personnel.

Principal speaker at the christening was the Honorable Charles G. (Chase) Untermeyer, Associate Director of the U.S. Information Agency. The ship's sponsor was Mrs. Diana Cumming Kendrick Untermeyer, his wife. Also delivering remarks at the ceremony were Rear Adm. Walter H. Cantrell, USN, Vice Commander, Naval Sea Systems Command; and Rear Adm.

David F. Chandler, USN, Vice Commander, Military Sealift Command.

The USNS Guadalupe has a cargo oil capacity of 183,000 barrels in 18 cargo tanks and is capable of simultaneously receiving, storing and discharging two separate grades of cargo fuel. Cargo underway replenishment is accomplished using transfer rigs with transfer hoses suspended by a span wire that is automatically maintained in a constant- tension range. All cargo pump and valve operations and the ship's segregated ballast system are remotely manipulated from the Cargo Control Center in the ship's superstructure.

Powered by twin, 10-cylinder, medium-speed diesel engines, the Guadalupe is capable of endurance speeds of 20 knots. The twin-screw propeller design provides the vessels of the class with improved directional stability, ease of control, and mission reliability under combat conditions.

The T-AO vessels and other ships under construction at Avondale are being built using state-of-the-art modular construction techniques, which include prefabrication and pre-outfitting of the individual modules t h a t make up the ships. Each of the huge modular units is assembled and outfitted with piping, ventilation ducts, electrical wire-ways, and other equipment, in designated outfitting zones throughout the shipyard.

The pre-outfitted modules are then moved to the erection site and assembled into complete ships. Asa result of thee modern construction techniques, the ships are more than 80 percent complete at the time of their launching.

The USNS Guadalupe, scheduled to be delivered to the Navy in late summer 1992, takes its name from a river located in the heart of Texas between San Antonio and Austin. A marker on the south bank of the Guadalupe River commemorates the firing of the first shot for Texas independence on October 2, 1835.

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