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U.S. Navy Constellation Frigates to Use Rolls-Royce Propellers

For the past four years, the U.S. Navy has been working to give birth to a new class of multi-mission guided-missile frigates. Called Constellation, the new class was first envisioned in 2017, and last year the builder of the vessels was selected: Fincantieri Marinette Marine.
Constellation class frigate rendering 1 photo
The company was awarded a multi-billion dollar program to create a fleet of up to 20 of these ships. The plan is to have the first one, aptly named USS Constellation, ready to enter service in 2026. Knowing this, Fincantieri got to work in finding the partners it needs to complete the project, and first on the list is Rolls-Royce.

Rolls-Royce is a name famous in several industries, include automotive, aviation, and navigation, even if it is worn by a set of different companies activating in each field. Generally, Rolls-Royce is associated with engines, but it makes other components for aircraft and vessels as well.

A lesser known aspect of Rolls-Royce is that it makes propellers for U.S. navy ships. In fact, its Pascagoula Foundry in Mississippi is one of just two facilities in the United States qualified to make propellers for the Navy, while the company itself is responsible for producing ninety-five percent of the propellers presently used by the American surface fleet.

This tradition will continue, it seems, with the Constellation FFG-62. Fincantieri announced Rolls-Royce is the partner of choice for making propellers for the new class of ships, and will have to deliver 40 such fixed-pitch parts (each ship will use two of them).

All will be made in Pascagoula, and the first pair is expected to be delivered two years from now. No additional details about the parts were provided, aside from the fact each will weigh “more than an average passenger bus.” Which, for reference, generally tips the scale at over 10 tons.

press release
 
 
 
 
 

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