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Coast Guard accepts ninth national security cutter


Ingalls Shipbuilding successfully completed acceptance trials for the Coast Guard’s ninth national security cutter (NSC), Stone, in October 2020. NSC Stone was accepted Nov. 9, 2020, by the Coast Guard in a socially distanced ceremony. Photo by Lance Davis of Huntington Ingalls Industries.

The Coast Guard today accepted delivery of the ninth national security cutter (NSC), Stone, in Pascagoula, Mississippi. Stone is scheduled for commissioning in February 2021 at its Charleston, South Carolina, homeport, also home to cutters Hamilton and James.

The cutter’s name honors Elmer Fowler Stone, a Coast Guard innovator and aviator. In May 1919, he became the first person to pilot an aircraft across the Atlantic, for which he was awarded the Navy Cross.

NSCs feature advanced command, control, communication, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance equipment; aviation support facilities; stern cutter boat launch; and long-endurance station keeping. The 418-foot cutters have an endurance of 60 to 90 days and can serve as operational-level headquarters for complex law-enforcement, defense and national security missions involving the Coast Guard and multiple partner agencies. They are replacing the 1960s-era 378-foot high-endurance cutters.

With the most recent delivery, the Coast Guard has taken possession of nine NSCs. Eight NSCs have been commissioned into service. In addition to Hamilton and James in Charleston, Coast Guard cutters Bertholf, Waesche, Stratton and Munro are stationed in Alameda, California, and cutters Kimball and Midgett in Honolulu. The service awarded a fixed-price contract option in December 2018 for production of the 10th and 11th NSCs.

For more information: National Security Cutter Program page