The future USS Canberra on the morning of the christening. Courtesy Austal USA

The 15th littoral combat ship destined to be based in San Diego was christened Saturday in Mobile, Alabama.

The future USS Canberra is the second Navy ship to be named after the Australian capital, and its name is a reflection of shipbuilder Austal USA‘s Australian roots.

“Today, just 16 years after Austal USA joined the U.S. defense industrial base, the company is hosting its 15th littoral combat ship christening — LCS 30, a ship proudly named after the capital of Australia and yet another symbol of the great ties between our two countries,” said company President Rusty Murdaugh.

Alison Petchell, the Australian Government’s Minister Counsellor Defence Materiel, christened the new Independence-class vessel.

Littoral combat ships are small, fast surface warships designed to operate in near-shore environments to counter submarines, mines and swarming small craft. They are armed with rapid-fire main guns, guided missiles and helicopters.

The are being built in two variants, a traditional monohull type based outside Jacksonville, FL, and a futuristic trimaran version based at Naval Base San Diego.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.