An Expeditionary Transfer Dock (ESD), formerly the Mobile Landing Platform (MLP), is designed to be a semi-submersible, flexible, modular platform providing the Navy with the capability to perform large-scale logistics movements such as the transfer of vehicles and equipment from sea to shore. These ships will significantly reduce the dependency on foreign ports and provide support in the absence of port availability.
In May 2011, General Dynamics NASSCO received a $744 million contract modification to fully fund the construction of the first two ships of the class, the USNS Montford Point (ESD 1) and USNS John Glenn (ESD 2). Additional funding of $115 million for long lead time material and advanced design was awarded in August 2010.
The first ship of the ESD program, USNS Montford Point (ESD 1) was delivered in May 2013, and the second ship, USNS John Glenn (ESD 2), was delivered in 2014.
In 2012, a third MLP, the USNS Lewis B. Puller (ESB 3), was added to the contract and reconfigured as an Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB), or formerly known as an MLP Afloat Forward Staging Base (AFSB). All three ships have been delivered to the U.S. Navy. A second and third ESB are currently under construction. Click here to learn more.