Philly launches new SUNY Maritime training ship

(PHILADELPHIA) — Empire State VII, the first of five U.S. Maritime Administration (MarAd) purpose-built training vessels for the nation’s maritime academies, was launched Saturday at Philadelphia Shipyard.

The new national security multi-mission vessel (NSMV), which is being built for the State University of New York (SUNY) Maritime College, was guided into its new berth by McAllister Towing tugboats. Delivery is expected in spring 2023.

SUNY Maritime College photo

“Today is a significant milestone in the construction of the training ship, and I’m proud to be here on behalf of (SUNY) Maritime College,” said Rear Adm. Michael Alfultis, president of the school. “Knowing that Philly Shipyard and McAllister Towing took great care in moving the vessel in preparation for its outfitting shows the strength and collaboration of the industry partners involved in this important effort.”

MarAd selected TOTE Services to be the vessel construction manager for the NSMV program in May 2019. In April 2020, TOTE Services awarded Philly Shipyard a contract to construct up to five NSMVs. These ships will be owned and operated by MarAd.

NSMV at a glance

• Length: 524’ 1”
• Beam: 88’ 7”
• Depth: 55’ 1.5”
• Design draft: 21’ 4”

• Four 3,900-kW diesel-electric main engines divided between two engine rooms
• Total installed power: 15,700 kW
• Full speed: 18 knots (four engines)
• Cruising speed: 12 knots with two main engines in one engine room • Range: 11,000-plus miles at 18 knots

• Azimuthing bow thruster for “take home” power
• Stern thruster
• Flap-type rudder

• Training ship mode: 600 cadets, 100 officers, faculty, staff and crew
• Surge capacity for humanitarian assistance/disaster response missions
• Food storage for 60 days
• Freshwater storage for 14 days


By Rich Miller