DULUTH, Minn. (WCCO) - A new warship will be commissioned in Duluth this weekend.
The USS Minneapolis-St. Paul is a Freedom-class combat ship built in Marinette, Wisconsin. The ship was launched and christened in June 2019.
The USS Minneapolis-St. Paul is a state-of-the-art ship, designed for speed and shallow water near shore combat.
"Using a shallow jet ski allows us significant maneuverability in the littorals and give us the advantage in that area that most ships with deep drafts do not have," said Alfonza White, the Milwaukee-born commander of the ship.
He and his crew of 140 are proud to work onboard a ship that can be dispatched anywhere it's needed.
"World wide access and this is part of the world. We are happy to sail all these areas. This is just proof that we can access so many different venues around the world," White said.
The ship has the capability of launching small boats and crafts, as well as airborne vessels like helot aircrafts and UAB aircrafts.
Speed and power is what the USS Minneapolis St. Paul is all about. No other ship in the Navy's fleet can stop or take off as fast as this one.
This ship can come into piers that are typically harder for other ships all because of its propulsion system.
"We have water jets that shoot out of buckets so our bucket angel and the thrust of the vector can be manipulated through these combinators," said an officer on board the bridge.
The ship's commissioning was delayed two years after problems with the propulsion system were discovered in the design of the ship.
But now, it's ready for action.
"Think of an Olympic size swimming pool and think of moving that volume of water every second through our propulsion system. That is how much thrust vector that we generate," White said.
After it's commissioned, the USS Minneapolis-St. Paul will be based at a port in Florida. It's the second naval vessel named after both Twin Cities.
The submarine USS Minneapolis-St. Paul served from 1984 unto 2008.
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