USNS Pililaau (T-AKR-304)

USNS Pililaau (T-AKR 304) is the fifth Bob Hope-class vehicle cargo ship built by the Avondale Shipyards of New Orleans, Louisiana for the United States Navy. Pililaau is named after Private first class Herbert K. Pililaau, a Medal of Honor recipient.

Pililaau in 2008
United States
Name: Pililaau
Namesake: Herbert K. Pililaau
Awarded: November 26, 1996
Builder: Avondale Shipyards, New Orleans, Louisiana
Laid down: June 29, 1998
Launched: January 29, 2000
Homeport: Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base New Orleans
Honors and
1 National Defense Service Medal
Status: in active service
General characteristics
Class and type: Bob Hope-class vehicle cargo ship
Displacement: 62,070 tons full
Length: 951 ft 5 in (290.0 m)
Beam: 106 ft (32.3 m)
Draft: 34 ft 10 in (10.6 m) maximum
Propulsion: 4 × Colt Pielstick 10 PC4.2 V diesels; 65,160 hp(m) (47.89 MW)(Beloit, WI) Falk Gear Power Transmission (Milwaukee, WI)
Speed: 24 knots (44 km/h)
Range: Not Disclosed
Capacity: 380,000 sq ft (35,000 m2) w/49,990 sq. ft. deck cargo
Complement: 26 to 45 civilian crew; up to 50 active duty
Armament: Unarmed

Service history

Pililaau is one of 19 and is part of the 16 ships in Military Sealift Command's Sealift Program Office. It is currently owned by the government, but run under a contract by a private company. The ship is kept in operational ready status (ROS-4) at all times. The ship is designed to be a multifunctional part of any fleet. It is capable of general cargo transportation, and also as a means to load and unload ships without the benefit of deep draft-capable, fixed port facilities. The ship was used throughout the Iraq and Afghanistan wars to transfer equipment to friendly ports in Europe to be brought into the combat theater.

The ship carries no fixed guns but may support a detachment of security forces for defense.


    This article includes information collected from the Naval Vessel Register, which, as a U.S. government publication, is in the public domain.

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